Friday, February 20, 2009

Habitat Notebooks

We did a habitat unit study for the first half of this school year. I decided I really liked making these notebooks. We just used a three ring binder. We had more room than just a typical lapbook, but were still able to include our little mini books and diagrams and things.
This study took us 14 weeks, working on science for about two hours, two days a week. The 6th and the 3rd grader made the notebooks.

I broke the habitats down into 7 catagories:
-Tropical Rain Forest/Islands
-Wetlands (Swamps, Ponds, Rivers)
-Grasslands (African Savannah and Australian Outback)
-North American Temperate Forest/Mountains

We used cardstock to seperate each habitat and on the first cardstock of each section we labeled the habitat and glued on nature magazine cutouts of animals/plants that were native to that habitat.

For each habitat, we also took a map and colored parts of the world that included that particular habitat. Also for each, I had them fill out a sheet of information for each of the following:
climate, temperatures, terrain, types of homes, common animals and vegetation.

I also had them choose one animal from each habitat to classify. We made a small accordian fold with those.

Now, everything else we included with each habitat just depended on what I had on hand for each one. Some of the mini books and things I got from Homeschool Share, some things were from other websites that I've included in my science resources, and some things I already had from various places that I've just collected here and there. You could use anything you have on hand or find online. We pasted these onto the cardstock, or hole punched them and just stuck them in after the cardstock. We also checked out some videos and books pertaining to each habitat from the library.
For the North American Temperate Forest, we focused on birds, so I had them include a few diagrams of feet, beaks, eggs, etc. and did an experiment with vinegar and an egg. (Stick the egg in vinegar and leave for a few days to see what happens.)

For the Grasslands, I had gotten a free lapbook on zebras, and we included a few more printouts from various places off the internet.

For the Rainforest, I used some printables from the Kapok Tree lapbook from Homeschool Share.
For the Ocean, we divided this into four parts: Intertidal Zone, Opean Ocean, Middle Depths and Deep Sea and did a few diagrams, mini books for each one (crabs, seaweed, anemones for intertidal and sharks, whales, jellyfish for the open ocean, etc.)
The younger kids, Pre-K, K, and 1st also did science at the same time as the older two, but we did lapbooks instead.
-Artic/Antarctica: Penguin lapbooks
-Rainforest: The Great Kapok Tree
-Grasslands: some zebra lapbook printables, and various others off the internet
-Desert: various printables
-Ocean: various printables
-North American Temperate Forest: focused on birds
Again, most of the "various materials" come from "googleing" the subject on the internet, free company e-newsletters, "hand me down" curriculum, ect. Check all the "Resources" links that I have on my sidebar. You can adapt this idea, but just use whatever you have on hand.


Kathleen said...

Love them! I prefer notebooking over's easier prep work on Mom, and it's easier to add to the notebooks down the road.

April said...

I love this Habitat Notebook!!!! We've been wanting to do something similar. Thanks for the ideas!

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