If you do not know what this is, you are not alone!
Lapbooks are becoming more and more popular as a schooling tool. Kids are making them, home-schoolers are using them, and there are several patterns for music education lapbooks out there on the web.
I was interested in these books as they seemed to be extensions of one of my interests which is file folder experiences. What concerned me the most about the templates already available were that they had lots of envelopes, flaps, and pictures to lift up. These are wonderful, but I have a rule that anything I spend lots of time creating HAS to be laminated so it has a chance of lasting past one session. Another rule of mine? It can be no larger than a file folder since I have limited storage space for things. So, I started to experiment.
The first experiment was a lapbook about music instrument families. I started off well - I decided to take one folder, fold it in on itself, and cut flaps from each of the new covers. I then used my computer to print out some challenge questions and answers for my clients. Questions included, "Name an instrument from the Brass family," and "Which instrument family do you play by hitting or shaking?" I used some label stickers and decorative stickers to increase visual interest, and then got REALLY stuck!
The problem? I had absolutely NO idea what to do with the remaining parts of the file folder. I had an inside part as well as the back of the folder that had nothing on it. I try very hard to respect copyright and other legal restrictions, so had no pictures for the lapbook. The pictures that I draw are not always the best quality, so I stopped working on this folder. I'll finish it when I have some instrument pictures that I like...
I absolutely CANNOT stop a project once I have started one, so I started a new lapbook centered around a different theme.
This one was about manners. Several years ago, many of my classes wrote piggyback lyrics around manners. We turned these songs into Powerpoint presentations and offered them to the rest of the school. As far as I know, no one has ever looked at the presentations. Sigh. I still have all of the songs and all of the presentations and was trying to think about using a lapbook to use music to address nonmusical goals. I started looking around my Therapeutic Music Experience (TME) file, and voila! There were the Manners songs.
To make the lapbook, I followed the same procedure of folding the sides into the center line. I cut flaps and started to decorate. I printed questions about appropriate responses to specific situations. The inner part of the flap has the expected manner. The center of the folder has the lyrics to all of the songs. I used stickers again and lots of scrapbooking paper to add some color.
I laminated and trimmed everything and the lapbook is ready to be field tested with my clients. I think I have a group in mind, and I definitely have two young ladies in individual treatment who I will try this book on during their next sessions.
Next time I do this, I will try to make something functional for my kids with pervasive involvement on the autism spectrum. The current lapbook is too busy visually and requires lots of reading - way too much for those kids. It is now time to go back into the contemplation mode of my creative process and start over...
What to do next... hmmmm.