Excellent Lesson Plan Resource for Younger Children
Well, as you know by now, our favorite place to spend time is in the library. During the same time I found those excellent books on science experiments, I also found Word Book’s Childcraft – The How and Why Library. This encyclopedia set is published by World Book. Out of curiosity, I took out two of their volumes – “About You” and “the World of Animals”. I cannot say how wonderful these books are. While I have found out since then that a lot of people have fond memories for these encyclopedias, I actually have never read them before (as a child or adult).
What makes them so great? On exactly two pages the book talks about different topics related to a certain subject. So, in “The World of Animals” volume, the first two pages discuss what is an animal. On the next two pages it discusses how different animals move. You probably need to see it to understand – but it sparked my interest as a great way to create lesson plans or lap books on each subject discussed. I think this book is a great starting point – it is well written and understandable for the younger crowd. The minute I opened the book I just realized that it would really help us to delve in further to these different topics (in fun ways) but serves as a nice guide of what exactly should I teach my child about animals (for instance).
Now, the bad news. They are expensive if you want the latest edition (all 15 volumes) – around $350.00. No, I’m not kidding – wish I were. However, you can find older volumes online (Ebay), at resale shops and at thrift stores. The only problem – and I am going to have to check it out – is how dated the information is in the older volumes. I really love the 2000 edition because it has excellent pictures, but try to find that edition for a good price – anywhere! I think I will probably try to get my hands on an older version to make comparrisons. I have a friend who has an older set and she just loves them.
Another thought: Just wanted to also say that I probably wouldn’t want to purchase the entire set because some of the topics are not useable for us as a Muslim family. They have an entire volume just discussing western holidays and the like. I don’t see any use for that information (at least not right now). However, most of the volumes have very useful information.
For those of you with younger children – who are struggling about what to teach your child – this might be a nice starting point. You don’t even have to extend the activities – but can just use these books as “reading time” material for you and your child. I am sure they will learn a lot from it. However, if you do want to find a useful starting point for developing lesson plans or creating extra activities for learning – I highly recommend these books. Insha’Allah you will find them useful too.
Sumayyah Umm SAA