Bookmaking for Little Hands
Whether you're new to lapbooking and are trying to get an idea of what minibooks are or whether you're an old hand at lapbooking and want some fresh ideas, welcome to the minibook gallery!
Browse the images for some creative inspiration. Follow the links for directions and templates.
Each photo featured on this page comes from a minibook that my daughter made as part of her homeschool experience over the past seven years.
If you're looking for printable templates for these minibooks, keep scrolling down. There's a link lower on the page for Homeschool Share, your best site for templates and printables.
1. Layered Book - Minibook Samples
Notes: A layered book is an easy but impressive minibook made with paper of various lengths, stacked and stapled together. Try different colors of paper to make a rainbow book! And remember that the layers can go up and down or side to side. A layered book is good for a list of related things.
2. Tabbed Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Tabbed Book Directions
Notes: A tabbed book is good for a list of similar things or a progression from small to large. It can have as few as three tabs or can have many more. The tabs can go across the top, sides, or bottom for even more versatility.
3. One Page Book - Minibook Samples
One Page Book
One Page Book Directions
Notes: With just one sheet of paper of most any size and a pair of scissors, you can make this one page book, the easiest and most versatile book there is! The larger your paper, the larger your finished book will be. Experiment with rectangles and squares of various sizes for unique books. Besides a cover and a back, this book has 6 interior pages. So it's good for three to six bits of information.
4. Accordion Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Accordion Book Directions.
Notes: This book can be as short or as long as you'd like. It is especially good for timelines, steps in a process, a series of events, or any sequence at all. The accordion book can unfold up, down, to the left or to the right. You can decide! Index cards, taped together, make good accordion books.
5. Flip Flap Book - Minibook Samples
Flip Flap Book
Click for Flip Flap Book Directions
Notes: The flip flap book (also called a shutterfold depending on the flaps) is a mini-book standby. We use it constantly! Vary your paper size and number of "doors" to fit your topic. Flaps can open on one side or both, on top or bottom or even in all four directions! These kinds of minibooks are great for vocabulary or most any topic at all.
6. Matchbooks - Minibook Sample
Click for Matchbook Directions.
Notes: Matchbooks are generally small minibooks, but experiment with larger ones for some variety! Try a column or row of minibooks for vocabulary or for related concepts.
7. Four Corner Book - Minibook Sample
Four Corner Book
Click for Four Corner Book Directions.
Notes: Another impressive but easy book. All it takes is a square piece of paper with corners folded into the center. Voila! You naturally get four sections, so material with four parts is best suited for this minibook.
Uses of Minibooks
Minibooks are used to record small bits of information in an attractive and creative format. Usually people associate them with lapbooks, but they can also stand alone for
-creative writing assignments
-a summary of a lesson (narration)
8. Pop Up Book - Minibook Samples
Pop Up Book
Click here for Pop-up Book Directions. (Be sure to go click NEXT to go through these four pages of directions for this fabulously simple but impressive mini-book.)
Notes: You can cut out paper shapes of whatever you're studying and attach them inside the pop-up. Add a cover made of another sheet of paper to the outside to finish it off.
9. Flag Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Flag Book Directions.
Notes: This mini-book is a bit tricky, but the "WOW!" effect of the finished product is worth the trouble. For best effect, you want at least six flags -- three on top and four on bottom. It would also work for eight flags, but more than that may get unwieldy. You'll want an even number of concepts for this type of book -- six or eight.
10. Fan Book - Minibook Samples
Click here for Fanbook Directions. (PDF)
Notes: For a fan book, make as many pages as you need and use a paper fastener to connect them at the bottom. This book then opens like a fan. Your pages can be most any shape at all as long as they can be connected at one corner or end. Store it in a pocket in your lapbook or affix the back page to the lapbook base.
11. Circle Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Circle Book Directions.(PDF)
Notes: Easy, easy! A circle book gives you six divisions once you take away the back and cover pages. If you've got six or fewer bits of information, this book will work for you.
12. Three Square Unfolding Book - Minibook Samples
There Square Unfolding Book
Click for Three Square Mini-book Directions.
Notes: It starts really small and opens really big. It uses an origami fold called the square base -- a bit tricky, but worth the effort.
13. Three Quarters Book - Minibook Samples
Three Quarters Minibook
Click for Three Quarter Minibook Directions,
Notes: Variations of this include cutting away one sixth or one eighth of a piece of paper. Experiment with different combinations to find a book size and shape that suits you!
14. Wheel Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Wheel Book Directions.
Notes: Wheel books are great for short lists or for a short process. The little ones especially love the action of turning the wheel. You'll need a paper fastener for this one.
15. Trifold Book - Minibook Samples
Click for Trifold Directions.
Notes: The trifold is one of my favorite minibooks because it is so very versatile! It can be short, tall, fat or skinny. You can even cut shapes into the trifold for a shaped trifold!
Book Making Reference
Keep it Fresh!
There are an abundance of minibook styles. But there are other ways you can multiply your options!
use colored papers -- even various colors within one book
use different sizes -- think of tiny ones or large ones; or make it really skinny or really wide; round the edges.
rotate the book -- the book can open on the top, side, or bottom.
Evan Moor & Donald Silver
Two great resources for reproducible minibooks are the Pockets series published by EvanMoor and most of Donald Silver's books. They are a great value for the money! Copy the pages you want to use, and you've got instant minibooks.
Denyse Knipe on January 14, 2020:
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RoadMonkey on August 25, 2019:
What an amazing number and variety of mini books. I never knew about all these. They would all be fun to try as an adult, never mind as a child. One of my granddaughters loves journalling and I think she will enjoy trying some of these.
jan-dm-5 on January 24, 2014:
Absolutely adore this page and am brainstorming ways to use it in my small group work as a school counselor. Thanks! Can't wait to try some.
ChenB on February 13, 2013:
What an excellent resource for lap booking. I think it's one of the best educational tool ideas to come around in a long time myself, and learning how to make so many different mini books like this just makes it a more interesting and varied experience to keep kids engaged. Great job, excellent lens.
LewisAndKatie on February 13, 2013:
I love this idea! This could be a fantastic project/homework task and im sure children will love this. I will be trying this out next time I am teaching!
laurenrich on January 26, 2013:
I enjoyed reading about these different minibooks. Designing and making these little books are interesting. Thanks for sharing.
MVSquid on January 25, 2013:
The mini books are great. I remember creating my own mini books as a child, but they were definitely not as well organized.
Kathy McGraw from California on December 01, 2012:
I love the creativity in these minibooks. I was just thinking that they could also be used as Christmas cards or really for just about anything.
anonymous on October 29, 2012:
Great useful tips. Thanks for a great lens :)
John Dyhouse from UK on October 27, 2012:
I love the ideas here for making art books, maybe not your intention but it has given me so many ideas. Thanks you and blessed
anonymous on September 30, 2012:
What a rich resource! I'm going to link to this on my homeschool blog!
HomeDecorKnight on September 23, 2012:
Really creative idea for bookmaking, wonderful lens.
Fay Favored from USA on September 02, 2012:
These are wonderful and so creative. Great ideas for the classroom.
funbee lm on July 30, 2012:
I remember making these when I was younger, really fun.
anonymous on July 18, 2012:
Love these. They will definitely be used in my classroom.
anonymous on July 05, 2012:
Thanks so much for sharing! I just had so much fun making these books and thinking of how I can incoroporate them into my curriculum. I like the idea of making lapbooks as an alternative to a whole science notebook because I just don't think I have enough curriculum to fill one. A lapbook can be made for each individual unit!
dream1983 on June 21, 2012:
Fantastic lens, great job! Squidlike
legalmoviedownloads1 on May 16, 2012:
Awesome idea! Minibooks look great. Thanks for sharing this idea.
anonymous on May 09, 2012:
Great ideas!!! I now have more ideas for mini projects with students. I have used them beyond reading and writing.... so thank you for this great site.
lclchors on May 06, 2012:
I happened upon lapbooks by a quirk but it definitely will be a activity when I have the granddaughter for the weekends
anonymous on April 04, 2012:
wow this site is awesome!! I already have so many ideas running through my head for my upcoming 1st grade plant unit!!!
anonymous on March 13, 2012:
These are some very good examples. I teach special education to students who struggle with varying levels of literacy. I am going to use this in conjunction with Dr. Suess and rhyming words. Thanks.
jimmyworldstar on February 04, 2012:
Minibooks are great for really short stories or writing down factoids.
psiloveyou1 on February 01, 2012:
Very cool books....I can use some of these ideas for my papercrafting projects and handmade cards. Thanks!
anonymous on November 19, 2011:
Thank you very much - this inspired me much :)
anjimabon on November 17, 2011:
I think this is going to be very helpful as I begin lapbooking!
wiedruce on November 04, 2011:
Thank you for sharing the ideas...It's fun and a very useful tips especially for children to memorize things easily.
poutine on October 27, 2011:
Thanks for giving us all those good useful tips.
anonymous on October 16, 2011:
Thank you very much for sharing your ideas. Teacher Julio, from Brazil.
ananimoss2 on October 07, 2011:
Great lens! I remember that I used to have so much fun making minibooks with my kids. (They still do sometimes)
Actiongames LM on October 06, 2011:
Cool beans, I remember the mini book
anonymous on September 30, 2011:
Fantastic! thank you for share!
Kathryn Grace from San Francisco on July 29, 2011:
What a great idea! I am dropping everything right now to make a number wheel book for my three year old grandchild, who already gets the concept of simple addition.
Philippians468 on April 14, 2011:
love the four corner book! such a simple concept and yet it is beautiful if done and decorated with love! cheers
Blackspaniel1 on April 02, 2011:
JulieS LM on March 30, 2011:
I love this lens! I have an artistic side that really appreciates hand made endeavors like this. We used Dinah Zike's book for some of our unit study projects. Our family has homeschooled for 23 years. I invite anyone that homeschools to visit my site for called Best Homeschool Buys.
anonymous on February 05, 2011:
Very helpful - I will probably use lots of these! But it doesn't have the "cut-out middle" minibook style I was looking for... oh, well - tons of inspiration anyway!
irenemaria from Sweden on January 30, 2011:
I will show this to my granddaughter. She is exactly this kind of child!
LouisaDembul on January 29, 2011:
What a wonderful lens! Good pictures and ideas. Thank you!
Mona from Iowa on January 12, 2011:
What an incredibly creative way to learn. I so wished I could have done something like this as a kid, and no kids of my own to try it out on. But I love books and journaling and art so this kinda combines all my favorite things in one.
anonymous on November 10, 2010:
Thanks for a terrific resource! We tried our first lapbook a few weeks ago, and loved it. Now my daughter wants all her "schooling" this year to consist of a series of lapbooks. All of your mini book ideas will be happily used throughout the year -- thanks again!
anonymous on October 22, 2010:
A lens full of creative ideas on minibooks. There are so many ways to use them intuitively.
lilgirllapbooker on October 20, 2010:
Hi! This Lens is WONDERFUL!!!! I love Lapbooks, and this is a treasure chest!
Thankyou so much!
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
anonymous on August 16, 2010:
Thank you to all the contributors who share all this wonderful information & ideas. My daughter is just in Kindergarten right now, but I am planning to implement lapbooks next year and am very excited to teach her in this way!
RobininColorado on June 20, 2010:
I have used this lens for about 3 months now. I didn't even know what a lens was when I found it! I featured it on "Stone Soup Homeschool Network" and I have become an avid notebooker since then. You inspired me to break out of curriculum and try something new. After 14 years homeschooling, that's a big change! Thanks Jimmie!
anonymous on April 16, 2010:
Wow! Thanks! We do tons of lapbooks, and very seldom find anyone who does them to the extent we do. Thanks for a wealth of new ideas and inspiration!!! I will share with my other hardcore home school friends.
anonymous on March 07, 2010:
This is incredible. I've never seen so many fabulous ideas in one page. I've never thought about putting different bookstyles together. Love this site!!!
JulieS LM on January 19, 2010:
I really appreciate this beautiful lense on making mini books. We have homeschooled for over 20 years and I still save the many books that my children made in homeschool. I wish I had had some of these great ideas when my children were younger. This is so inspiring! Well, maybe for the grandchildren..... Visit me at Used Homeschool Curriculum
anonymous on November 11, 2009:
I absolutely love this site. I reference it every time I want to make minibooks, and I plan to share it with others. I hope you don't mind!
Patricia on October 19, 2009:
Sounds like fun
anonymous on September 28, 2009:
I am a first time home school mom. I am so glad that I stumbled upon your web site. I anticipate referring to your web site often. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
anonymous on August 29, 2009:
I've got to tell you, I've been attempting and then quite frankly, giving up on lapbooks for almost a year now. Came across a post in CafeMom wich directed me here and WOW!! I'm going to try this again!
This was the most informative site that I've seen on lapbooks, I feel so much more confident now. Thanks so much for having this site! Your documentation on how to do it all is inspirational!!
I'm really impressed and cannot thank you enough!
anonymous on August 06, 2009:
I am enjoying looking at your lenses on lapbooking!
anonymous on June 10, 2009:
Thank you so much for making this website. It is very useful and it helped me a lot.
I love the various styles.
PS: Where did you find all of that?
anonymous on April 29, 2009:
Thank you so much for your inspiration. It has been great to get us started and we have even gotten inspiration enough to try our own things. Thank you.
anonymous on April 17, 2009:
hi i really love makind nini books for my project.i am an 11 year old and i love learning
Aquavel on March 04, 2009:
Great lens filled with so many variations! Just wonderful! You're an excellent teacher & mom plus you have a very TALENTED daughter. (And you're great at documenting the process too, which helps the rest of us.) 5*s!
opalfire on February 03, 2009:
I will be able to use this with my children. My eldest son love to make mini-books and this will help him to hone his skills :)
thank you :)
LadyP8 on January 13, 2009:
I love the various styles of minibooks. I plan to add you to my faves....if I can figure that out. LOL!
anonymous on January 10, 2009:
You are awesome, and thanks for sharing your ideas on here. That's what makes us other homeschoolers keep at it, the ideas of others!! Thanks again and keep up your great work!
gods_grace_notes on November 25, 2008:
Jimmie, I love your ideas for lapbooking, and your daughter has obviously inherited your artistic nature! I really like the matchbook idea, and the coloring page of Tchaicovsky is just too cute.
Great job from mom AND daughter!
Kerri Bee from Upstate, NY on November 23, 2008:
This is a great collection of learning tools. Thanks for the resource.
Evelyn Saenz from Royalton on November 17, 2008:
Your lenses are always so inspiring. I am going to show this lens to my daughter who needs to turn in a creative biography next week. I am sure that these minibooks will be right up her alley.
Lensrolled to Beginning to Read
groovyoldlady on October 27, 2008:
I put this lens in my faves because it encomapsses all the others. Totally terrific!
anonymous on October 11, 2008:
WOW I love this activity. How engaging and enriching for every student. I am going to try this and then allow my students to put lapbook in library for others to see! thanks for all the templates it will make life a lot easier
anonymous on October 10, 2008:
Information overload! I loved it!!
rockycha on October 03, 2008:
Outstanding information, presentation and depth! Angel Blessings to you :)
anonymous on October 01, 2008:
Very vice thanks for sharing!