Friday, April 5, 2013

A Journey Through Learning {Crew Review}

A Journey Through Learning creates the most amazing lapbooks for your use.  There are 100's of lapbooks to choose from on many varied subjects.  From educational to fun, you can find the perfect lapbook at A Journey Through Learning.

What's a lapbook?  A lapbook is a hands-on, creative activity using mini-books featuring a topic you are learning about to create a sort of journal in a folder.  The finished folder can be viewed on the lap of your child, therefore being termed a "lapbook".  This is a fun method of learning for almost anyone.

Lapbooks are something that we enjoy using in our homeschooling.  For this review, I chose to use two different lapbooks: Letters, Numbers and Shapes with Laycie, and Astronomy and Space with Winston, Emmalee and some of it also with Laycie.

This lapbook contains 51 color-filled pages.  The first 5 pages are a lapbook introductory showing the key elements of lapbook how-to's: creation, storage, purpose.  Page 6 provides a guide to putting this particular lapbook together, followed by the Table of Contents on page 7.

The next 34 pages are jam-packed with activities teaching letters, numbers and shapes to the early learner.  Every letter of the alphabet is covered, basic shapes and numbers 1-10.  The activities make a great introduction to any preschooler or review for a child who may just need a little extra lesson review.
At the end of the lapbook, the teacher can find suggestions for things to teach letters.  Listed are several suggestions for every letter of the alphabet and are a great guide for teaching or just getting ideas to expand the lessons you may already have in mind.  There are also suggestions for learning about shapes with food, fun activities and games, fingerplays for shapes and numbers, printing poems, and a suggested book list to use with this lapbook.

Astronomy and Space is a full color-filled 70 page unit study.  The first two pages of this lapbook provide a brief explanation of a unit study.  A supplies sheet is also included in the beginning of the lapbook so that the educator can prepare ahead, followed by a thorough Table of Contents.  

This particular study begins with Creation in Genesis 1.  Other things covered in this study are where you live, particulars of the solar system, day and night, and so very much more.  There are planet information cards for the student to fill out in detail.

Near the end of this study is an included Bibliography with websites used to create the study.  These websites are also a great source of additional information that can be used to expand upon this particular study.  A set of enrichment pages can also be found towards the back of the study which includes additional reading suggestions, a NICK list, a reading tracking sheet, planet book report, and narration forms.  

We used these lapbooks in our homeschooling over the past few weeks as a center of learning for our daily lessons.  I used the Letters, Numbers and Shapes lapbook with my soon-to-be five year old and she had no problems completing it.  She enjoyed pasting the shapes into place, practicing her letter and number writing, and creating her mini-books.  This particular lapbook was a little more of a review for her than it was a challenge as she already knew much of what it provided but it will be a perfect lesson for her brother when it comes time for him to learn the same things in the future.  I suggest it used with an early preschooler over an almost Kindergartener.

We used the Astronomy and Space unit study as a family study.  I read all of the inclusive materials, as well as took the kids on a quick tour of the websites listed in the Bibliography to expand our lessons.  Each child found a different planet that interested them and we learned many strange and specific details for each.   The kids shared in filling out the worksheets and answering the questions provided in the study.  We did not use the suggested reading selections since we did this study quickly but we did track our reading of books already in our libraries as an addition to our lessons using the sheet provided in the study itself.  We also used the planet reports to research more about each planet we learned about.

Overall, we all enjoyed these studies.  Both are wonderfully thorough and exceptionally made.  They are easily implemented and can be used to create a full lesson on their intended subjects.  Colorful, fun and challenging the student to learn more.

You can purchase A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks through their website.  Letters, Numbers and Shapes Lapbook is available as a download for $13, on CD for $14, printed for $20 or assembled for $29.  Astronomy and Space Unit Study is available as a download for $13, on CD for $14 or printed for $21.

For more reviews of A Journey Through Learning, please visit the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog!


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