My children loved doing lapbooks and we quickly figured out some practical tips to prevent overwhelm and to maximise our studies with other activities. Here are some of my tried-&-tested practical lapbook planning tips ~
Often when printing out and cutting out the lapbook minibooks for your new lapbook , you will have heaps of booklets, papers, cutouts which may cause you and your children to feel overwhelmed.
Print out the table of contents or index with every download and file this with the lapbook instructions. If your lapbook printout doesn’t have an index, draw up a list of each minibook theme, or the topics or chapters covered in each minibook of the lapbook study along with a short description of each activity. You can download my free lapbook planner below.
Whether you download a lapbook or make one for yourself, it helps to print out the lapbook planner or index page so that you have a birds’ eye view of your core topics, sub-topics, minibooks, relevant websites, videos, songs, recipes, hands-on activities and any other downloads as well as the time you plan for each minibook or topic. Here is the index I used for my planning my Ancient Egypt Lapbook. (You can freely download the Ancient Egypt Lapbook)
Here is my Pearl Harbour lapbook organiser which outlined additional websites and sources used:
For more complex subject such as World Wars, it helps to draw up basic vertical timeline and mark the dates for all the most important events. This helps to follow the course of events chronologically as well as plan the lapbook layout.
We always pasted all the minibooks into the lapbook before we started so that we did not waste time searching through a packet of minibooks to find the relevant one for the day. You can read all about this in my post Time-saving tips for doing lapbooks. I must add here that my children often pasted their minibooks where they felt it best fitted and not strictly according to the suggested layout and it never was a problem.
We duct-taped along the spine of the lapbook and punched holes in the duct tape so that they were on hand in our files or ring binders. (Read how we assemble and duct tape our Aesop lapbooks here.)
We stored each child’s completed lapbooks together in a file folder as seen in the photo below. (Read all about how we stored our lapbooks and notebook pages here.)
My children loved doing hands-on activities so I always extended our planned lapbook time to provide a wide margin for the spontaneous learning activities or additional enrichment.
Please do not ever rush to finish anything! Take your time and aim to include the “extra” additional studies and hands-on activities! These will bring your lapbook study to life!