Posts Tagged ‘notebooking’


It has been a little while since my last post. It seems that life gets in the way and time slips by faster than I realize sometimes.

The kids have embarked on a new project that will last for the entire school year. They are sending out flat travelers as a geography project. I went to the Making Friends website and printed out their free paper dolls and an assortment of outfits for the kids to use. After cutting out the dolls and clothes, they were assembled with a glue stick to hold things together. The kids’ names were written on the back of their dolls along with a return address label. Last step, we used the 4×6 inch size self-sealing laminating pouches to laminate the dolls. I trimmed the excess laminate from around the dolls, leaving at least a 1/4” border.

The kids are sending the dolls out with a letter. When the dolls are returned, they will have pictures and a letter talking about the adventures their dolls went on.

For each of the kids, I designed a flat traveler log sheet. On this form we are recording the date the doll is mailed, address it was sent to, what was included with the doll, date it was returned, and notes. For Little Miss, I also printed out the free printable State Notebook Pages from Harrington Harmonies website.

Little Miss will be making a scrapbook style notebook for her traveler. While the doll is on her adventure, Little Miss will be filling out the State Notebook Pages for the state her traveler is going to. When the traveler returns, she will add the letter, pictures, and anything else she receives into the notebook as well.

Pookie’s notebook will be a scrapbook of his traveler’s adventures. At this point, he is still too young developmentally to do the notebooking pages. He loves to look through pictures however, so a scrapbook of the traveler’s trips will be fun for him.

It will be exciting to see all the places that the kids’ travelers go to visit. We have a list of friends wanting to host a traveler as well as other places to send them to. Pookie’s traveler is making a trip down under to the Australia Zoo this week. Little Miss has one traveler going to a friend in Texas and another will be going to the historic Jamestown settlement. She is currently studying about Jamestown, so the traveler’s visit will work well into her lessons.

Think of places that your kids are studying about. Why not mail a flat traveler to those locations? While you may not be able to go there personally, your child can experience them through their flat traveler. Check online to see if the various attractions or historical places have an education department. If so, that department may be more than happy to host your child’s traveler. Why not send the traveler to a Renaissance festival? Or on a trip to see the Smithsonian museum? What about the NASA Space Center in Florida? There are so many ways that you can expand your child’s horizons through flat travelers. Where will your child’s traveler go?

Read Full Post »

Every homeschool family has their own way of doing the children’s Homeschool Notebooks. They start out similar, but how the pages go together can vary from one child to another. Both of our kids have a 3-ring binder and that is where the similarity ends for them.

Little Miss’s binder is set up with index tabs for each of the subjects. Each week, she has at least one assignment that is a page to go into her notebook. Maps, drawings, reports, reading logs, these all go into their respective sections of the notebook. On field trips, we will be adding scrapbook pages of pictures taken along with some journaling.

Pookies’ binder is indexed by units. With the exception of the initial 2-week unit on Creation, all the units are 1 week in length. Having his index set up by units will make it more convenient. We can look at all of the work for each unit without flipping through sections.

I have 2 forms specifically for Pookie that I am including in his homeschool notebook. The first is a therapy log. This form is where I record each time he goes to his sessions with his Occupational, Physical, and Speech therapists each week. The second is a weekly planner page that I made to record the Montessori type activities and the progress he is making using his PODD communication book. That form was a blank page from the free lesson planner at New Bee Homeschooler page. Down the left side of the lesson plan page were spaces to record 3 different subjects. The bottom portion of the page (used for group subjects in their example) is where I am going to record the PODD communication progress each week.

One extra note about a portfolio for a special needs child or any child who is receiving OT, PT, or Speech therapies. If the therapist does not offer you a copy of their goals list that they are working on with your child, then ask for a copy of it. This can go into you child’s homeschool records as a part of their IEP. In our state, homeschoolers are not required to have an IEP, but I feel that it is important to show that our son is receiving the therapies needed. You never know when someone may question that. Especially if they are not supportive of the idea of a special needs child being homeschooled.

Little Miss’ theme of study for the entire term is early American history. Her curriculum has assignments for notebooking pages for her most of her subjects. With that in mind, it was a natural progression to just set her notebook up indexed by subject.

I love the notebooking pages available through Notebooking Pages. The pages are very easy to incorporate into the lessons. If you use Heart of Dakota curriculum, you can find facebook groups for each program level. On the groups’ files, you can often find printable notebooking pages specific to the lessons that other parents have designed and shared. These can make the notebooking pages easier to complete as well.

My goal is that at the end of the school term, I will be able to take the kids’ notebooks and have the pages spiral bound into a portfolio book for the entire year’s work. The math workbook pages that Little Miss is working on will have the binding cut off so that they can be inserted into the bound book as well. I want it to be as complete of a representation of their work as possible. Intermingled among the pages will be scrapbook pages with pictures of the kids going on field trips, doing special activities and projects throughout the year. These books will be a keepsake, a record of their work, and for Pookie it will also serve to be a record of his progress and IEP.

Read Full Post »

One of Little Miss’ favorite books is “Pagoo” by Holling C. Holling.  Pagoo is the story of a little Hermit Crab, told from his perspective.  The story starts at the very beginning of his life.  Pagoo is guided by a character known as Old Man.  Old Man is best described as the inner voice of Pagoo’s instincts.


One of the aspects of the story that I love is that it is detailed in what life in the tide pools is like.  We learn about the various life forms.  The pictures in the book are outstanding in their detail.  On one page, you have very colorful drawn scenes from the tide pool.  On the facing page, there are sketches of various life forms in the color picture that are drawn in detail and labeled so children can identify what each life form is.

We found a very thorough unit study on Homeschool Share.  This free printable unit study comes complete with notebooking pages for each of the 19 chapters.  There are also pages for General information, Mid-book Review, and a Book Report.

We are repeating the story this term.  Little Miss had read it last term, but this time will be doing the pages to go with it.  She truly enjoyed this story and learned much from it.  Each time she reads it or looks at the illustrations, she finds something new.  It is fun to watch a child be so excited about books!  In that, we have been very blessed.

Read Full Post »

I am so amazed with my kids.  Little Miss is loving her school work now that we have tweaked the system in how she accomplishes it.  The child who did not like to write is enjoying notebooking.  The big draw for her is that she loves showing Daddy what she has done each week while he was away on the truck.  She actually gets excited about doing History, Geography, and Science.  Math doesn’t give her the same thrill, but she is content to do it.  Overall, she has come a long way since September.

Each day, we begin with a Keepers of the Faith character trait study. Currently we are working on the trait of Charity.  We are using this part as a devotional.  Pookie listens in to the lesson & discussion as well.  Her listening skills are improving not only in her studies, but I have been seeing a more focused child when I talk to her about other things throughout the day.  She has also come away from it with a more gentle outlook towards others.

Pookie is coming along in his studies also.  Today, for example, he completed 6 workboxes.  For him, that was a great acheivement.  He is writing a bit better now that he is becoming accustomed to the Twist & Write pencil we bought earlier in the year.  Today, he practiced the letter A again as a review.  He is working on his colors also.  I was so happy to see him complete a worksheet that asked for him to look at a row of items and pick out the one that doesn’t match.  He didn’t “X” them out as directed but did mark off the ones that were different in each row.

I realized today that he doesn’t like his desk.  Up until now, he has fussed abit when doing his schoolwork.  Today, we used the coffee table and he worked without any fuss at all.  I am going to continue working at the coffee table to see how he responds to that.


Read Full Post »

I have found that Little Miss and Pookie are doing well in their homeschooling but there was one area lacking.  Do the the amount of hands-on and reading in their curriculum, there was very little to show Daddy when he is home from the truck.  The answer — Notebooking!  Tucking a notebooking page into her workbox file is easy.  I am gradually building up a supply of a variety of notebooking page designs for her to choose from.

It takes a bit of planning, but I am finding it to be easy to plan out notebooking activities.  I look at the week’s assignments and find ways to make it a notebooking page.  One example is the grammar assignments.  In one lesson, there were about 5 simple sentences that I was to discuss with Little Miss.  She was to tell me what the subject of the sentences were.  Instead of doing this orally, I typed up the sentences on the laptop and printed them out as a worksheet.  At the end of a reading assignment in her history reader, there are usually questions to discuss.  Again, this is turned into a worksheet.  I added maps that I have found online to show where the historical events took place.

For her free reading, she chose to do the Little House books.  On Homeschool Share, you can find free unit studies for each of the Little House books.  We are doing these.  They take up quite a lot of space in her notebook binder, so I bind them with my comb binder.   I keep track of her free reading books on a reading log.

When I was doing a web search for notebooking ideas, I found free printable covers for the various subjects at the Crafty Classroom.  She has other free printables available also.  These work great for Little Miss.  Each week, she has assignments in the binder to show her work and give Daddy an opportunity to go over her work with her.

More free notebooking printables can be found at:

Notebooking Pages has a free membership that allows you to access free printables

The Notebooking Fairy has a large selection of printables

Homeschool Helper

Jimmie’s Collage has a list of links for a variety of school subjects and includes links to posts describing how to do notebooking.

That Resource Site has a large number of printables available both for notebooking as well as other homeschooling projects.

Activity Village is one of my favorite “go to” sites.  When you go to the website, type notebooking in the search field.  You will get pages upon pages of link to their site for free printable noteboooking pages on a large variety of topics.

Contented at Home is a homeschooling blog.  Type notebooking in the search field and you will find the notebooking pages available in the blog.  Some topics are Bible related while others are not.

Read Full Post »