This post is from contributor, Sharla Kostelyk. Originally published Feb. 2014.
Disclosure: There are affiliate links within this post.
In our house, we love books! Our shelves are lined with books that are so loved, they are worn down and falling apart! In our homeschool room, we have a reading corner with a large bean bag chair and many hours are spent there, falling in love with fictional characters and imagining ourselves in faraway lands.
I find that, especially when we read novels, we sometimes aren’t ready for the book to end. One way we’ve found to continue our immersion into those books is to create little unit studies based on what we’re reading.
I create book activities to go along with short children’s stories and novels. It provides a wonderful opportunity for the kids to reinforce their learning and to delve deeper into the story.
With other books, we create a more in-depth study including printables (many of which we find right here on Free Homeschool Deals!), a sensory bin, crafts, discussions, notebooking, themed snacks, and sometimes, even a field trip. Two examples of these more elaborate book units we’ve done are Have You Filled a Bucket Today? and The Secret Garden.
Mini units such as these are great tools for teaching multiple ages of children as you can really gear the activities to the group and tailor the expectations based on age and ability. They are also a way to incorporate other concepts such as math, science, creative writing, and art into their learning.
To create your own mini unit based on a book:
- Choose a book you and your kids love as that will make it easier to come up with ideas.
- Search Google, Free Homeschool Deals, and Pinterest for printables that go with the book.
- Think about ways to create an exciting environment, like adding simple decorations (seashells for an ocean theme book, flowers for one that takes place in the spring), or coming up with a snack (sandwiches cut into sailboats for an adventure at sea, Alphabits for Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, or literally making green eggs and ham for the Dr. Seuss classic), which will turn an ordinary day into a fun one.
- Flip through the story for inspiration. You may come up with ideas for crafts, sensory play, or outdoor exploration based on themes, setting, characters, or objects from the book.
- Ask your kids for ideas. Kids have great imaginations and will love having the chance to participate in planning.
What books have you created activities for?
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