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!
If you enjoyed reading, I would love to have you join my email list to receive more articles just like this. Subscribe and get weekly encouraging posts from one mom to another!
Don’t keep this post to yourself. Share it!