It's finally here.
available at Oscraps and 20% off through October 2nd. (Newsletter subscribers get an extra 10% off. Not a subcriber yet? Click Here to sign up and the latest issue will be mailed to you shortly.)
regular price $6.75 | now $5.40
I'm SO excited to bring you kidLIFE, a collection of templates and embellishments to help kids learn the art of documenting life-without a lot of fuss. The whole idea stemmed from my desire to modify scrapbooking for the students in my classroom. I wanted them to be able to document their achievements this year on a weekly basis, but I needed to be able to do it easily and without a lot of materials.
As a result, I've developed a series of templates with different sized spaces on them, inspired by popular photo sleeve pocket albums. The spaces can be filled with drawings, photos, or even clippings & saved bits from a child's life. I've also designed some easy-to-print embellishments which allow kids to cut and paste wordart and journaling prompts to their layouts. The templates are all 8.5" x 11" so they can fit into standard sheet protectors from your local office supply store. This allows kids to create easy, one page layouts that can be paired with a memorable assignment or project saved from school.
I don't like to sell anything that I wouldn't use personally, so I've been using this system to teach Ethan how to record the events that he finds important. To my delight, this five year-old boy really enjoys creating pages and has even started to plan what pages he wants to make next (his latest kung-fu moves and a tribute to the hamsters). I've also found that working with him on his scrapbook has been a very meaningful way for us to spend together, and yet it doesn't take up a lot of time. So definitely a plus no matter which way you look at it. Here's how it all works:
step 1 | choosing a template
I start by printing one of the 5 layouts included in the starter kit. In the photo above, I worked from the layered PSD file because I wanted to add some handwriting guide line stamps (also included) to the bottom of the page. The layered PSD file is fully customizable, so you can change it to suit your needs. It also includes clipping masks for each section so you can clip your favorite photos on to the page before printing if you like.
step 2 | journaling cards
Next, I like to have Ethan pick a journaling card out. It provides a nice place for me to add additional journaling to the layout. I have him pick one out early and paste it down so that we know exactly how much space he has left to devote to drawing.
step 3 | laying down the content
Here you can see Ethan's page about solid shapes, which has been his focus in math this past week. He chose two journaling cards to be part of the layout and left the rest for his drawings of all the shapes. I usually have him journal a sentence or two, and then have him dictate what he wants the rest to say. (For kids this around this age, I recommend this because they tire easily from writing and we don't want this to become a chore. They also tend to write very large.) I make sure not to add my own writing, but stick to what he dictates to me. (It's also very helpful to prompt young children with a lot of questions.)
The starter kit also comes with journal prompt sheets saved as high resolution PDF files. You can print these and then have your child cut out the prompts he/she wishes to use for his/her layout.
Ethan decided on "This week I got to" for his layout about golfing with daddy.
For older children, like my third graders, I would leave most of the layout up to them. I would let them know what supplies are available, and then just let them loose. Sometimes it's hard to watch them cut crookedly or glue things down at a slant, but you have to remember that this is their project, not yours. Besides, if we never let them cut or paste, how will they ever get any better at it? I'm constantly having to keep myself from forcing my own crazy hang-ups about straight edges upon Ethan. LOL.
Step 4 | adding the finishing touches
After all of the journaling and pictures have been finished I guide Ethan in adding the little finishing touches. The kidLIFE starter kit comes with a sheet of colored month tags and circular wordart tags that you can punch out with your favorite 1.5" punch. In the photo above I used my 1.5" Fiskars scalloped circle punch.
On this page about the first day of school, Ethan added a "fun" tag to his photo and a "september" month tag to the sidebar. (The way he cut that tag out totally made me bonkers, but I shoved a gummy bear in my mouth and kept quiet. LOL. Anyways, he's always really happy with his creations, and that makes me happy too ♥)
So there you have it. Scrapbook pages told from a kid's point of view in 4 easy steps. What's there not to like? Hahaha. Here are some more pictures of Ethan's first few pages.
On the left side (behind the geometry layout), I had Ethan pick one of his assignments from this week about shapes.
This layout we paired with an art project he created in the style of Lichtenstein.
Products Ethan and I used above:
110 1b. Classic Crest cover weight paper in Solar White by Neenah Paper which I purchase by the reem at Kelly Paper, a paper warehouse open to the public