Perhaps you've heard the term "lap book" tossed around in home-schooling circles. You wanted to ask someone what the heck they were talking about, but you didn't want to appear ignorant of the new home-school jargon. So, here is the "411" on the latest home-schooling trend.
"Lap book" is actually a trademarked term coined by Tammy Duby of Tobi's Lab. She has spent countless hours creating and teaching the art of "lap books" "Lap books" can also be called "shutter-books" and "folder books". Whatever the term, they are a way to organize information.
A lapbook is a project book or file folder, laid out in a creative manner, that fits in the child’s lap.
A lapbook is an inexpensive portfolio or collection of mini-books, flaps, and folded display material, that provides interactive space for drawings, stories, graphs, graphics, timelines, diagrams, and written work, from any topic, unit study, book you choose, gathered, glued, and creatively displayed in a coloured standard sized cardboard folder, often folded in a “shutter-fold” (though our family doesn’t), that fits in your lap.
“Using creative means to display unit studies, topics, or projects - by computer or by hand - for most ages. * Fold a card folder into a shutter; * Use mini-books and various folds to ‘package’ the information and visuals (photos, graphics, pictures) Interactive, hands-on, addictive! “
Lapbooks are a wonderful hands-on homeschooling tool - a kind of ’scrapbooking meets homeschooling’ - though more than home educators use them.
Each lapbook is an original creation, will be different according to topic and creator, and will be a treasure for years to come. There is no right or wrong way to lapbook.
Lapbooking is a great vehicle to teach CONTENT and PROCESS.
The CONTENT comes from topics that interest the students [delight-driven] - this brings about more internal-based motivation and therefore greater learning from and ownership of the work. The PROCESS is what will help the children through life - research, planning, creativity, presentation, evaluation.
The term “Lap Book” was first coined by Tammy Duby, a homeschool mother and writer from Virginia, USA. She named it that because the whole project could fit into a “book” that fits in the child’s lap.
* When you make your own - it’s cheaper, more creative and unique. You learn a lot by doing the research and more thought is put into them. There’s an unlimited number of subjects, since you are not depending on what others have already come up with. * To use pre-made lapbooks - you can save time and it’s easier to complete a lapbook. It is an easy start especially when you’re new to lapbooking and may be intimidated by the choice. A pre-made provides a ready guide for the children so they don’t get overwhelmed. Of course, you can always alter a pre-made and make it your own!
The best advice I can give you for lapbooking is “Just Do It”! No one will be grading you. Get out your supplies, put on your thinking caps and have fun! You will be amazed what you and your family can come up with together.
I used to do this from time to time with Aaron. But I have to say that his lapbooks NEVER looked like any of the examples I've seen online. I felt badly when we first attempted lapbooking because the projects always looked like a five year old did it! I think alot of the examples have much mama input and I made Aaron mostly responsible for the lapbooks, so they didn't ever look quite as neat as the examples. I do think lapbooking is fun and worthwhile and I might start doing this with Jack during the upcoming year.
I think that whether it works or not probably depends on the child involved, whether they are into this kind of thing or not. I am going to try this with my son because he needs to do stuff that requires patience and attention to detail, something not easy to accomplish for an ADHD child in PS, but I will probably wait until we are more settled in our homeschooling routine. We have not formally started yet, although I have been teaching him besides PS since he was 5.