Thursday, September 16, 2010

lapbooks and lesson plans and unit studies...oh my!

So, being a "newbie" to this whole homeschooling scene, I didn't realize there would be a whole education language that I would need to identify myself with. Not ever having had a child in the school system, or having any education in teaching per se, there have been lots of things that I have had to familiarize myself with. Honestly, I didn't even know what "unit studies," "lapbooks," or "workboxes" were until fairly recently! What I have realized is how much all of these things can add to our homeschooling experience!
Recently, I decided to incorporate unit studies into our workbox system (whoa...I am getting REALLY complex here). I made a list of a ton of topics that I knew Isaac would enjoy studying (i.e. ancient Egypt, the continents, the rainforest, and on and on). Because these things are not part of our core curriculum, I decided to make them part of our workbox system. That way, we can feel free to spend as much or as little time as desired on each topic. I had Isaac pick what topic he wanted to study first, and he chose Ancient Egypt! What WONDERFUL resources are out there on the internet for this topic. It is almost overwhelming!
I happened to have a book from the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Ancient Egypt activities for children, so I have mostly used that this week for our unit study. Isaac got to make a mummy using a doll (should have been a Barbie, but we don't have any of those around here! So, Bob the Builder had to take one for the team), toilet paper, tape, oil and salt.




He also got to practice writing his name in hieroglyphs, and did some drawing Egyptian-style.
Next week, we are planning to delve further into the Ancient Egyptian world, and we will be making a lapbook (our first) on Anciet Egypt.
My mom told me once that homeschooling would eventually become fun for me, that it would be akin to my scrapbooking hobby. I didn't really believe her, and until now, felt like it was pretty much just another thing on my long to-do list. This year, the light has come on for me, and I am truly enjoying this process!

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