Creating a lapbook can be a simple or as complex as you or your child wants to make it. There are no special tools or supplies that you need (unless you just have to have all the extras), and no special skills required. Lapbooking 101; this article will give you a basic understanding of what they are and how to get started making one. Let’s get started.
What are they?
Quite simply stated, a lapbook is a hands on tool that can be used in your home or in an educational setting to help children learn about a specific subject area. It is a collection of booklets that are usually displayed in a file folder that can fit nicely onto your lap; thus the name lapbook. Since we have learned that children have a greater chance at recalling information and learning when they are given hands on experience and a chance to be creative in their own learning styles, lapbooks have become one of the most popular way for parents that home school to educate their children while at the same time making it fun and interesting.
Making a lapbook
As already stated, they are usually made from file folders and depending on how much room you need sometimes more than one. You can add our own papers, stamps, stickers, pictures or whatever you need to make your lapbook your very own. It is as simple or as complex as you want to make it. Some children really get into it and will find themselves really digging into the topic of interest and creating magnificent educational books that they can use in the future for other projects. Other children don’t spend as much time doing them but still have the enjoyment of making something that’s worth keeping. Here are some items you might find useful to have around the house if you’re planning on making a lapbook:
• Paper. Lots of different kinds and colors of paper can let the imagination run wild. Who likes to just use white paper when you’re trying to create a masterpiece? Cardstock works the best as it won’t leak through to the other side when you’re writing or coloring on it. You can cut it, fold it, and do whatever you need to create your very own lapbook.
• Scissors. Scissors will come in handy when it comes to cutting pictures, clip art, and even things you have written to fit into your lapbook. It’s also nice to have some scissors with different kinds of cuts. Fiskars makes an entire set of scissors with some fun and creative cuts that children love to use and they are very safe.
• Adhesives. I say adhesive because there is more than just one way to attach something to a piece of paper. You can choose what you like best but some ideas are glue sticks, glue dots, tape, or staples. Make sure whatever you use is acid free (most of it is) so that it won’t leave your papers marked and warped. For younger children it is easier for them to hand things like glue sticks or staples. Older kids can really take their pick of what they’d like to use.
• A computer. This is not necessarily a necessity but will come in extremely handy as your child is trying to write things to fit into the book. They can choose different fonts and sizes to go with their themes and if you have access to the Internet via your computer they can find some great clip art images and pictures to use with their theme as well.
This article went briefly over the basics of lapbook; what it is and what you’ll need. All that’s left is to make the actual lapbook so good luck and be creative.