After a busy week full of Easter preparations, with my husband working nearly every night to get ready for our church’s Easter production, we are taking a much needed break from school. Oklahoma schools took their spring break two weeks ago, and now it’s our turn. 🙂
Honestly, I have been feeling a little burnt out lately so I thought this was a perfect time to relax and recharge. We also just finished our science unit on the human body (space is up next!), and Rory has now learned all of her uppercase letters. I am looking forward to some serious spring cleaning, chilling out, and reevaluating my goals for both kids this year.
So we’re taking a week off from school, and here I am blogging about… a homeschool project! We recently completed our study about Ancient Greece, and I wanted to share how our learning came to life. This is our second attempt at a lapbook. Our first one was done on Ancient China, using a template. This time, we threw caution to the wind and created one completely on our own. Colton could not wait to start filling it with the various things he learned (did I mention how much I love this learning tool?!) Though I gave him some guidance, he mostly decided what topics, people, and events he wanted to illustrate and report on.
All you need is a manila folder, paper, markers, and creativity! Easy peasy. We started by finding Greece on our world map and comparing its size to the large Persian Empire at the time. This was important because Greece fought and beat the Persian army not once but twice, ensuring its freedom from imperial rule.
Our main text was The Usborne Book of World History that has full color pictures, descriptions, and maps of different civilizations through time. We also read from A Child’s History of the World, which tells about historical events in story book form. Here, Colton is finishing a picture about young Spartan soldiers.
On the green mini book above, he illustrated various things that we have gained from Ancient Greece such as the Olympic Games, mathematical concepts like geometry, and architecture featuring three different types of columns. On the front, he drew philosophers and comedic & tragic drama masks. The white mini book shows the important battles that Alexander the Great fought and won in his conquest for power (I traced the map from The Usborne Book, and he colored and labeled it).
We learned about Greek mythology and the roles of Greek gods and goddesses by watching Kid’s Animated History. Colton drew the mansion they live in with different rooms on top of Mount Olympus, along with a Pegasus. The soldiers and buildings he drew below this depict the city of Athens, who fought the Peloponnesian War with Sparta over 27 years. It seemed that a lot of fighting took place in Ancient Greece!
I did some searching on Pinterest for an idea on how to represent the Parthenon, constructed in 447 BC for the goddess Athena, and found a picture and descriptions to cut & paste from Tina’s Dynamic Homeschool. Bonus that it included a write up about the Acropolis! We googled “laurel wreath” to learn more about its origin as the prize given to the Olympics’ winner, and discovered that it comes from a Greek myth. According to the myth, the god Apollo was in love with a nymph named Daphne, but she wanted nothing to do with him. She ran away, and as Apollo approached her she turned into a laurel tree. Apollo cut off one of its branches, twisting it into a wreath, and declared the tree sacred.
Finally, Colton had fun coloring and cutting out a Greek style drama mask, and then trying it on! This became part of the cover for his lapbook.
Learning about events that took place and people who lived thousands of years ago can be tricky for a seven-year-old who doesn’t yet grasp abstract thinking. This was a perfect way to bring meaning to what we read about and discussed, and best of all, it was fun!
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oh what fun!! You are an awesome momma! I did somewhat of a homeschool program with my son and we never had that much fun 🙁 we ended up having to go back to regular school but this encourages me so!
Wow, thank you Crystal! I’m not gonna lie; homeschooling is really hard sometimes and I feel like we’re not having that much fun. It definitely stretches me and takes me outside my comfort zone, but then watching my kids enjoy learning makes it all worthwhile! Accepting that it can’t and won’t be fun all the time makes it a little easier. 🙂
Watching your kids enjoy learning is what makes it worth it, I bet! #HomeMattersParty
Thanks for posting this. I have wanted to do a lapbook for a while now. This may give me the push I needed.
I put off doing a lapbook for a long time because I thought it would be too involved. When we did our first one several weeks ago, I thought why have we never done this before?? It was much easier than I originally thought, and my son really engaged with the material!
This looks like so much fun! Great idea for adding extra fun to learning.
Thanks Monica! It was a lot of fun to put together, and now he has something tangible to help him remember that time period in history.
I love how this DOESN’T use a template. More hand drawing, more thinking about what to put into it. He did a great job on it!
That is really encouraging, Gale! I have seen amazing pre-fab lapbooks, and thought that by not using one this time it might not be very “presentable” to post about. He did put a lot of his own thoughts into it, though, and at this age it’s better for him to draw pictures to represent what he learned than write things out in report form.
We love lapbooking, and I’m really impressed that you just came up with your own. 🙂
Thank you, Leah! I’ve done a lot of things since we started homeschooling that I never would have imagined. 😉
This looks like it was great fun! We just did Ancient Egypt last year. I pinned this still though!
Thanks for pinning, Joelle! It was a really fun learning experience.
Healing Mama says
This seems so fun! I love how his project looked. Not only did it look fun, but educational.
Lapbooks are fun! I loved them with my oldest. My son isn’t as much into writing and he doesn’t want to do them like she did. I need to try again with him. Thanks for the reminder. Such great memories.
Daisy Suman says
I have never made a lapbook, but it sure looks like something I would like to try out with my son…hopefully soon 🙂
This looks awesome! I love the idea of a lapbook! It looks like you guys are doing wonderful work! Keep it up Momma! Thanks for sharing at Family Joy Blog link UP!
Kelly @RaisingSamuels says
What an awesome and fun unit! We are getting ready to start learning about ancient Greece in our homeschool also! Thanks for sharing with #SocialButterflySunday! Hope to see you link up again this week 🙂
What a great job – he should be so proud of that! #HomeMattersParty
Thanks for sharing this! I am getting ideas together for homeschooling as my husband and I have been thinking about it. #HomeMattersParty
Awesome lapbook. Sounds fun and educational.
Michelle James says
What a great project! Thanks for sharing at #HomeMattersParty
Jeanne Grunert says
Great idea! I am sure other parents will love it, too. Thank you for sharing it on the #HomeMattersParty
Crystal Green says
It looks like he had a lot of fun making this Greece lap book. I have grown to love this idea to help make teaching more fun! It allows the kids to learn in a wide range of ways. Thanks for sharing how you all did this lesson.
Lorelai @ Life With Lorelai says
This is totally awesome. LOVE that drawing! Thanks for sharing and co-hosting at the #HomeMattersParty – you’re lovely! 🙂
Life With Lorelai