Our Sharks Unit Study

For the month of August we focused on learning all about sharks. This, was again, all my daughter’s idea and I didn’t realize that the Discovery Channel’s Shark Week was also in August. It coincided perfectly and gave us a few more opportunities to find shark information.

Shark Unit Study

We followed our usual plan of starting with a set of info cards and creating a lapbook around our theme. We picked up the Safari Ltd. Sharks Toob at our local hobby shop, which gave us a good start for some different sharks to learn about. We also used some toys that we had on hand to give us a good assortment of sharks.

I used a variety of resources for printables for our lapbook. Many of my favorties came from the always helpful homeschoolshare.com. They have a free shark lapbook full of fun activities and information. I also used some of the great printables from the 3dinosaurs.com shark pack

Shark Unit Study

This has been one of my daughters favorite unit studies, by far. I’m so pleased with how much she and I learned together and how much of it has stuck! It really reinforces to me how much better learning is when it is interest led and fun!

Additional materials we used in our Sharks Unit Study:

Handwriting worksheet generator

Shark coloring sheets

Shark Worksheets

Jonathan Bird’s Blue World Shark Academy

My Sharks Unit Study Pinterest board

Our Butterfly Unit Study

I have found that my daughter really enjoys learning with a unit study. She is engaged and attentive and retains so much of what we learn. I also enjoy them and find I really like the process of designing a specific study for her and I to do together.

For the month of April we focused on learning about butterflies. We were planning a trip to the San Diego Safari Park’s annual Butterfly Jungle exhibit and I thought learning about some of the insects we would be seeing would be fun for J. Well, it was so successful that our one week butterfly study turned into a whole month of material.

We started with the lapbook, Insects: Butterfly Speedy Lapbook from Homeschool Bits. This is a quick little book to print and assemble with facts that are short and to the point. It was actually the perfect amount of information for my three year old to understand and learn something from. I decided to work on a little part of the book each week so she could really focus and absorb what we were learning.

Butterfly Unit Study

We discussed the butterfly life cycle first. We used our Safari Ltd. Safariology figures to match up to the coloring page. It also gave J a good idea of what the actual things we were talking about look like. She really enjoyed this part of the study. I also printed out several coloring sheets of specific butterflies and we found as many butterfly/caterpillar stickers as we could for her to embellish her book with.

Butterfly Unit Study

We broke out the Playdoh one morning and made butterfly impressions with the life cycle figures. They turned out very pretty!

Butterfly Unit Study

Butterfly Unit Study

As I mentioned before, the highlight of our unit study was our trip to the Butterfly Jungle. We picked a few butterflies from the handout to study and learn about the week before. J chose the Blue Morpho, Giant Owl, Orange Julia, Monarch and the Zebra Longwing. She learned their names and to identify them by sight. Her expression was adorable when she walked into the atrium and saw the actual butterflies we had spent so much time talking about! She knew every butterfly she was looking at! It made this mama quite proud!

San Diego Safari Park Butterfly Jungle

Butterfly Jungle

I’m really happy with how our little unit study went and I think my daughter enjoyed it too. It was lots of fun and learning for us to do together and that’s the best part!

Butterfly Unit Study

Some of the additional materials we used in our study were:

Butterflies (Penguin Young Readers, L2) by Emily Neye

Butterfly figures 

Safari Ltd. Butterfly Toob

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Stickers

Butterfly Coloring Sheets

“Head, Thorax, & Abdomen” The Insect Song

Having Fun Creating Tot Books

My daughter and I recently finished making two very cute “Tot Books.” I discovered these fun printables while searching for activities for my five year old nephew. Auntie is sort of in charge of finding fun extra curricular supplements for his homeschool lessons. My searching was fruitful, for I found two great tot books for my daughter. All of these are courtesy of the incredibly extensive 1plus1plus1equals1. I can say for certain that this is one of my top go to resource sites for fun and engaging ideas to do with our kids.

Our first project is the Little Einsteins Tot Book.  The Little Einsteins are pretty popular here at our house, so I was thrilled to find these printables and even happier to see that they could be made into a little lapbook. We have created a lapbook together before and my daughter and I both enjoyed the process very much. This little pack includes coloring, shapes, matching, ABCs, and some dot marker sheets. I kind of designed my own layout for putting all of the pieces together in the folder. I like making cards with the smaller pieces, by gluing them to some card stock (and sometimes laminating), for more durability. We even found a nice Little Einsteins picture to glue to the cover. Overall, we were both pleased with the final product and my daughter was quite proud to show it off to Daddy when he got home!

Little Einsteins Tot Book Little Einsteins Tot Book

The second project we made is the Nemo Tot Book. Again, big Nemo fans here.  This one has cute little alphabet and color cards, which I also decided to back with card stock. It also has a fun booklet to make with many of the other Nemo characters and their names. My daughter decorated the front cover with some clown fish stickers we found at the good ol’ dollar store. I had a little trouble getting all of my pockets, etc., to stay put in the book, hence the tape. I’m not going to fret over the small imperfections…my daughter thinks it’s great! 🙂 

Nemo Tot Book

Nemo Tot BookNemo Tot Book

 

Again, many thanks go to 1plus1plus1equals1 for all of the wonderful resources!