Apologia Science Notebooks/Lapbook

I have a question concerning the Apologia Science Curricula. We will be doing Astronomy this coming year. I have a girl going into the 1st grade and a boy going into 3rd.
I was wondering if you did the lap books or if it was supposed to be a choice: lap book or Journal?
Or does the journal have lap book type activities?
Also what is the difference between the Jr and the regular note booking journal? (age suggestions?)

I’ve only used the junior notebooking journal. It has some pages that would be appropriate for a 1st grader (coloring, copywork) but most of the other projects will be too difficult. I, personally, wouldn’t buy one for a first grader. A third grader could do most of it-all of it with help. I’d just focus on doing it with the third grader and let the first grader follow along and get out of it what she can.

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We are working through Astronomy now and my 4th grader is using the Notebook. I also have the Lap book CD printed out but we ended up not using it, it was too much to do both. I can’t say which one is best, I think it depends on your preferences and that of your child’s.
My daughter loves notebooking so we chose to do that. It has a section for copywork, questions, notebooking pages, vocabulary croswords, project pages (where they record what they did), and additional resources and projects suggestions. And it also contains a mini book for each lesson, sort of like lapbooking.
For 1st grade, I think getting a printout for him to color would be enough, along with doing the projects and activities together with the older sibling. The yahoo group members have uploaded such papers and more.
My suggestion is to look up on Pinterest activities to do with each lesson. I reserved Fridays for those activities and they add so much to the lesson. Like doing the oreo cookie moon phases and the playdough earth layers.

Have fun!!


I called it a Notebook, but I’m referring to the Journal :grin:
Also, I don’t know what the Jr. version is like other than that it has coloring pages which the other one does not.

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The notebooking journal has lapbook like activities in it like little mini books and other papers that you cut out of the book and fill in and fold and glue. I have never used the lapbooks so I can’t comment on that, but my kids really enjoyed the Astronomy notebooking journal.

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Wow! Maybe you should put out suggested weekly activities! :wink: Thanks for the advice!!
Let me know if there are any other supplements (like books ect…) that you have found particularly helpful. Great job!!

My son is in 4th grade and he just finished the Exploring Creation with Zoology 2. While our family loves to lap book, we chose to do just the journal and text. It worked great. I loved the variety of activities from crossword puzzles to minibooks. By not doing both, it also gave us more time to do some of the projects suggested in the journal.
We liked the format so much that we have already decided to do the same for his next year science with the Anatomy and his 9th grade brother will be doing the journal for his Biology this time around. We will still do lap books, but just in other subjects.

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We just finished our first lesson with the journal. Do you think there is a lot of writing? I love the interactive pages but I feel like some of the written entries were repetitive. We might skip some. I HATE skipping anything, but I really want them to like this curriculum!

There is a lot of writing, even for my 5th grader there is. She did not fill in every space. Sometimes just a square or two with drawings, sometimes a little writing in her own words of whatever she could remember, and sometimes I offered to write in for her. Sometimes she loved something and filled it all out. Usually she preferred to do the vocabulary crosswords, do some drawing, write a little bit, and I helped her with the cutting and pasting when I could tell she had just done too much. We were trying to do an experiment, the Journal and reading all in the same day though, so maybe that’s why it felt like a lot sometimes as it took us a while to do it all.
See which pages he seems to like more, if it’s the question and answer pages, or the drawing and writing pages, etc. Those two are very similar, you could just choose to do one or the other. You shouldn’t feel like it has to be all filled in. I do try to encourage my daughter to do it all as it will help cement the concepts she’s learning about, but if at times it is just too much, we just skip it. It’s really just a record of what she’s done and learned, and learning shouldn’t be overwhelming.

Are you following the schedule on the front of the journal?

I know you will find the right balance to it.

Also, something else we do is add in a lot of pictures. Pictures are worth a thousand words, so they say. We don’t write anything into the project pages, just pictures of her working on the experiments, crafts, reading a book, or out in nature. Something that relates to the lesson, like watching the stars, etc. That can be done for other sections of the journal as well. Or even pictures from their dedicated website. Have you checked it out? I have found some good stuff there, as well as Pinterest and YouTube.

Hi everyone,

I’m thinking of using Apologia for next year. I have a 1st grader, a 5th grader and a 7th grader. I wanted to know if I can start science with the youngest or should wait until his older, like 3rd grade? He is above his grade level. I really not sure how to approach science with him.

Thanks in advanced

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We have, since first posting, been through astronomy and currently we are doing Botany. My first grader does the junior journal and my 3rd grader the regular journal without problems. We are sticking with it and moving on to flying animals next. We chose to go in creation order.

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