Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Home School in the Woods Review

With this year being a presidential election year, I jumped at the chance to use HISTORY Through the Ages Hands-on History Lap-Pak: U.S. Elections from Home School in the Woods.

Who is this for?
Home School in the Woods suggests grades 3-8 for this Lap-Pak. I used it with my eight year old son, who works mostly on a third grade level.
What is it?
With a reading booklet and audio text and 21 lapbooking projects that incorporate creative writing and coloring, you will delve into the background of U.S. government and the elections process of how we choose our officials.
Where can I find it?

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  ReviewYou can buy this lapbook online as a CD ($19.95 + shipping) to be shipped to you or as an instant download ($18.95). 


When and Why should I use it?
This is an election year!  It is perfect now as we are gearing up for elections in November, but could be used anytime. It is a great resource for Civics class and could be used to "fill in" those holes for your portfolio.
How did we use it?

I had the instant download version, which was incredibly easy to use. All directions are supplied and it was easy to click, print, and put together. With the lapbook projects, a text is supplied to be read aloud for the projects. They offer an audio version as well, which is nice. I chose to read the text myself to my son. The text is heavier reading, and would be more appropriate for an older child to read on his/her own. Reading it to my son gave me a chance to answer questions and explain things in a way my eight-year-old could better understand. Along with the text, there was a suggested book list. My library had many of the books, so I just borrowed a few of the suggested texts and let my son read them when we felt inclined. He is an avid reader and ended up reading all the books within the first week. He even read one to his little sister, who is just a bit too young for this lapbook.

Each day we would work on one of the lapbook projects. I would read the text while he colored the project. After we discussed what I read, we would put the project together. It only took about 15 minutes each day to do a project and each project built upon the next.  We enjoyed this hands-on way of learning together. We didn't finish the lapbook, but we did get through half of it. We plan on continuing the projects finishing the lapbook this year because we have been enjoying it.

These are some of the projects we were able to finish for the lapbook.
Here is an example of one of the projects. Each branch lifts up to explain what each one is and what it does.
We kept all our projects in a bag so that we didn't lose anything. When we have all the projects finished, we will put the lapbook together.
What I liked about the lapbook:

  • Lots of kinesthetic learning
  • Short lessons that we could focus on
  • Nice graphics!
  • Options to write or not for tiered learning. (My son chose to NOT write, and that is ok!)
What I didn't like about the lapbook:
  • There is only one text for all readers. It is harder reading, so for younger kids you may want to adapt it a bit.
  • At first I was overwhelmed with the lapbook, but then I found the directions. I would be very confused if I didn't have the directions to guide me.

Although we haven't had a chance to put the lapbook together, I wanted to share with you what the finished lapbook looks like. Here are some pictures from Home School in the Woods.

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review

U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review


U.S. Elections History Lap-Pak  Review


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