Friday, February 12, 2010

Sword in the Tree Lapbook

One of the many wonderful things about using Heart of Dakota this year is all the wonderful books that we've been introduced to. They have all become favorite in our home and this is a great blessing for me. I never did much reading as a child but have been determined to expose my children to books from the very beginning.
We were able to do a lapbook a few months back on one of our very favorite books, The Sword in the Tree by Clyde Robert Bulla. Here is a look at what we did.

This is our cover page. I can't remember off the top of my head which girl drew the cover but it I do remember that they both helped come up with the design. (It's a sword in a tree). I glued the page on after the coloring and then cut it in half so that the book could be opened.

Upon opening the lapbook you will find three pages dedicated to knights since they were the main part of the story. The left and right sides are the backs of the cover and the middle page is an extra folder piece taped on at the bottom.
At the top left and bottom right of the side pages are my daughter's pop up books. They each wrote about their favorite parts of the story and then dictated their pictures to me.

The center page has a couple of Handwriting/Phonics books done in italics for both girls. Big Sis's book includes the dots for tracing but Biggest Sis's doesn't. The other two items on the page are for learning the names of the different parts of the Knight's armor and the castle. I will admit that we had to check the internet for the correct names to a couple of those! You can find most of our knight items here.

The girls also had a lot of fun designing their own shields.

The center flap opens downward to show even more learning books!!

When you flip open the center flap you are brought to our England page.
The story is set in Middle Ages in England so we decided to learn just a little about England. In the top center we put our map of England one fold book. The yellow shutter fold book opens up to show a basic map of Europe. The girls were to find where England is, color the country and then write down which continent England is on. The what happened next envelope includes seven small sheets of paper with drawings of different periods in history. For example there is one drawing of the manger scene, a drawing of pyramids, the signing of the constitution etc. The girls needed to try and figure out which event happened first and then sequentialy put the rest in order. This was a little hard at first but they got the hang of it and enjoy this little activity.
On the back side of the flap is some information about trees. We talked some about the Life Cycle of trees and then made a flap book from here. This was very interesting and it was amazing for us all to think that the Lord can take something so small and cause it to grow into something so large and strong. We also made a How We Use Trees T book. The girls realized just how important trees are! I also found a sweet little poem about trees that fit perfectly on the side of this page.

When the England page is flipped up you will find our 2nd page dedicated to knights.
We made a weapons flap on which we glued pictures of what each weapon looked like. That also took internet searching! ;) In the top right we glued a small orange Life of a Knight tab book. The girls loved learning about what a young boy went through in order to become a knight.
The bottom right side of this flap is where we added our vocabulary pocket. Aren't the little shields cute?! Since this was a new subject for us there was no shortage of words for this pocket!
Here is a picture of the center page of the lapbook.

This is our plot diamond fold book. (Sorry I can't remember the actual name of this type of fold nor where I got it from!) This book is pretty self-explanitory. It was a great way to help Biggest summarize the book into it's main parts.
This cute little tree shaped book is our Cast of Characters book. Including the title page there are four pages to this little book that are stapled together at the top and then glued to the lapbook. On each page I wrote a location for the title and then we brainstormed to think of all of the characters that we met at the location. This is how we divided the book up: at Weldon Castle we were introduced to Shan, Lord Weldon, Lady Marion, Lionel and Nappus. In the woods we met Pheobe, Adam, Magnus, Twigs and the robbers. In Camelot we met Sir Gareth, Sir Kay and King Arthur.

I don't have a picture of the Bible Verse shield but we used it to write down a verse that went along with the theme that we felt was important to the book, being strong in the face of fear! What a great lesson to learn!
All in all the book was a blast! The kids, even Brother, would beg me to keep reading! This was just an awesome story and I highly recommend this book to all families!!! The lapbook was pretty detailed but there was so much that we were able to do with this book! We truly enjoyed this adventure! Clyde Robert Bulla has become one of our very favorite authors!

I hope that you can use this lapbook in your own home!!


  1. This is great! We love Bulla also.

  2. Hi there! I'm hoping to study this book next week with my kids - thanks for the great ideas!

  3. Thanks so much for this post! I have never done a lapbook before, but it looks like fun... I think my boys would love it and they are really enjoying this book!


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