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Friday, June 17, 2011

Summer School - Dinosaur Lapbook

Lapbooks are something new I'm doing with my boys this summer.  Personally, *I* really enjoy them.  The coloring, cutting, and pasting is filling my need for craftiness when I can't do any bigger projects for myself ; )  I thought they would be a more creative and fun way to practice some school skills over the summer, rather than just sitting and doing worksheets.  I mostly had my 7yr old in mind when I started looking at lapbooks....but he's the one who ended up liking them the least.  Of course.

I found a great resource for free lapbook printables in all sorts of themes at Homeschool Share.  My boys go to public school, but I enjoy using such resources to help me prepare theme weeks in the summer.  SO, the dinosaur lapbook that we used can be found here.

I have been doing a lot of the assembly of the lapbooks myself, and then letting my boys color the components and decorate the book.  Then we go through it together, bit by bit, and fill in the information.

My 5 yr old decorated the front of the dinosaur lapbook.  Sometimes I write words with dotted lines that they can trace.
At the start of Dino Week, we filled out the "Days of Creation" booklet by reading together in a children's Bible.

Then we read in the book of Job about the creature called "Behemoth", and filled in the sentences in the mini book.
There is a pocket that holds cards of different dinosaurs that they are working on coloring in.  Also match-book flaps with some vocab words, where we wrote about paleontologists, what dinosaurs are, and some of our favorite facts about dinosaurs...
There is a spin wheel about "What Happened to the Dinosaurs After the Flood?", and a "Dinosaur World Map" where they can cut/paste different dinosaurs onto pages of continent maps.

I think our favorite was the "How Big Were the Dinosaurs" graph.

We filled in the graph together, and then used it for a great activity of making block towers to see how those dinos compared with each other.  Our big blocks were units of 5.  We searched through our bin of plastic dinos to match a representative with each tower, if we had one.
I helped them make labels that they could trace the names of the dinosaurs from the graph, and we taped them onto our block towers.

Little brother wasn't able to participate in much of these activities, so I also prepared a Dino Tot Pack for him, with dinosaur-themed activities like sequencing, alphabet, counting, colors, matching, etc.

The first year that I did Summer School Theme Weeks with my boys, I printed free worksheets from various sites.  Lapbooks and Tot Packs are great, because they include many of the same concepts yet can be used over and over again!

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