Saturday, October 4, 2008

Benjamin Franklin Week

Soooo, I am behind on posting due to a certain someone turning four this past week. It is amazing how a child's party can be so time consuming to plan and then to recover from! Benjamin had a blast (which is all that matters). I cannot believe he is four, he is getting so big. Ugh, when 4 sounds old, what does that make me?

For week three of preschool our theme was Benjamin Franklin. I am passionate about history, especially American history. I decided the best way to introduce the boys to history was to begin with a famous namesake. So for Benjamin, it was Mr. Franklin, and wow was he an interesting man.

One of the wonderful aspects of homeschooling as a parent is that I get to continue learning as well. And let's face it, all the time put into teaching, all the knowledge gained from preparing lessons, far exceeds what I can introduce him to at one time. I better enjoy this process, or it will become tiresome - draining. My main goal here is to encourage him to crave learning. This, I am very thankful to say, is something my own homeschooling mother passed on to me.

I digress.

This is our Benjamin Franklin lapbook.

Obviously many of the aspects of this lapbook are abstract and difficult for a four year old to fully grasp; however, I firmly believe that it is never too early to introduce concepts, as long as they are presented in an age appropriate manner.

This the front cover.

The sayings that we focused on I translated to concepts that he could understand. I told him "A penny saved is a penny earned" means that every time you chose not to buy a toy and give a store your money, your money jar stays nice and full. This isn't the full meaning of the saying, but it is the beginning of understanding it.

The two saying on the front cover as well as the images of Franklin's inventions on the inside I found here.

We included these paragraphs:
Now that the colonists were free and independent, it became necessary to decide what type of government would be established. Even though I was not in my prime and my health was starting to fail, at eighty-one, I was the oldest delegate at the Constitutional Convention.

Upon signing the Constitution on September 17, 1787, I became the only Founding Father to have signed all five documents that established American independence: the Declaration of Independence, the Treaty of Amity and Commerce with France, the Treaty of Alliance with France, the Treaty of Peace with Great Britain, and the Constitution of the United States of America.

These I found here at Ben's Guide to U.S Government for Kids, I love this site! This is also the site where I found all of the timeline information for the inside right flap.

Every week I pin up a picture to represent our theme. This week we decided to use my picture of Benjamin Franklin to make a scene. I gave him crazy scissors, stickers, and some cloud stencils. This was is creation.

On the back we included the original Betsy Ross flag. This is the flag that flew towards the end of Franklin's life. Here is a great site on flag history.

Did you know?

That Benjamin Franklin invented

Franklin Stove
Glass Armonica
Lightning Rod

And that he proposed the ideas for

Daylight Savings Time
The First Fire Department
Political Cartoons
Fire Insurance

These sites have all kinds of information like this.
An Enlightened American

We read several books, but only really enjoyed Ben an Me:An Astonishing Life of Benjamin Franklin by His Good Mouse Amos. I read this short chapter book with different funny voices and he really got into it.


penney douglas said...

So you were homeschooled yourself!!! Wow, it looks like your mom did a great job. You are doing a great job with your son.

We've been reading Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography. That is, the older kids and I have been reading it. He used copywork a lot to improve his own writing.

I never thought about trying to teach my younger kids about a historical figure using a lapbook. Yours is great. I might use it so I can bring the younger kids in on what the older ones are learning. Thanks so much for sharing.