Sunday, July 22, 2012

Beginning Your Interactive Notebook

I hope that this blog inspires you to start using interactive notebooks with your students.  Here are some things to think about when you get started...

First, you need to decide what type of notebook you will be using.  I went with a Five Subject Notebook (because I believe I need one that large).  Some people prefer Marble Composition Pads (because it is pretty much impossible to tear or lose pages from it).

Next, figure out what you want to include in your notebook (besides notes, problems, and foldables).  Some absolute musts (in my humble opinion) include:
  • Table of Contents - one of the major benefits of using an interactive notebook is that it helps keep your students more organized.  Every page in the notebook is numbered, so the table of contents makes it easy to quickly locate specific topics.  (I also decided to color-code my Table of Contents by unit.  Of course, I decided this after I already started so my first entries in the Table of Contents are random colors.)
  • Cover/Cover Page (designed by the student)
  • Interactive Notebook Rubric
  • Interactive Notebook Guidelines

I also decided to include a grade sheet for each marking period and my grading policy.  Here is what I have so far:

My Cover Page (I apologize...I am no artist!):

My Guidelines:
You can get a copy at my TeachersPayTeachers store.

My Rubric:
I found this free rubric here!


























My Grading Policy:


























My Grade Logs (There is one for each marking period, for a total of four pages):
You can download this from my TeachersPayTeachers Store.



























My Table of Contents:
I used three pages for my Table of Contents.
It may be more than needed, but better to be safe than sorry!

A few other things to keep in mind:
  • Don't let your students use permanent marker in their notebooks.  It will bleed through the pages. (Washable markers have been working just fine for me.)
  • Glue sticks worked great for glueing everything into the notebook.  White glue is a little messy.
Okay, you're ready!  Go out, get a notebook, some markers, a glue stick and get started today!


18 comments:

  1. I began interactive notebooks with my students last year and really liked them although I saw many areas where I hope to improve in the upcoming year. I love seeing how other teachers successfully use them in their rooms.

    Julie


    Setting Sail in 7th Grade

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    1. I am so excited to start using them. I started gathering lots of ideas for them about 6 months ago and can't wait to try them out with my students!

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    2. Time was my biggest issue. I used the Dinah Zike's book (love the cd that came with it) and made tabs for each unit, had them laminated, and bought packing tape to attach. I THOUGHT my students would be able to place these themselves....um...NO! It was 6th graders then, but I after the 2nd tab, I abandoned that idea. Keeping everyone on the same page was also tricky for me. I really should have completed my IMN (interactive math notebook) for the unit BEFORE starting. I will be planning better this year. I am also enlisting the help of parent volunteers to place those tricky tabs for the students! :) The best part of the notebook? Students were going back to them months later and they could FIND and USE those notes!! It was an awesome thing which far outweighed the problems I had. Can't wait to read how it works for you!

      Julie
      Setting Sail in 7th Grade

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    3. Which Dinah Zike book did you use? Does the CD have blank foldables on it?? I am trying to get as many units in my notebook as possible finished before school starts. I have a few done for my 7th grade so far...I need to get working on my 8th grade and my Algebra I classes!

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    4. I use Dinah Zike's Notebook Foldables for Spirals, Binders, and Composition Books. Yes - the CD does have blank printable templates on every foldable! The only part I don't like is that they are in PDFs with some editing features...but they cannot be saved with the editing. :( Still, great resource!

      Julie

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    5. I figured that was the book that you used. I actually ordered it a few days ago. Can't wait until it arrives!

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  2. LOVE this notebook idea! I teach 7th and 8th grade math...among other subjects...and have had students use a math binder for years....I'm always looking for something new and better....thanks!!

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  3. strongly considering INBs this year myself - here is the Zinke sampler PDF http://www.classconnect.com/app/filebox/4fe885b6c582168c16000003/

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  4. like what I see so far - strongly considering INBs in my own classroom next year ... here's a PDF sampler of Zike's Foldables for Math

    http://www.classconnect.com/app/filebox/4fe885b6c582168c16000003/

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  5. I just wanted to say thank you for inspiring me! I linked this post on my site. THANK YOU!!

    http://schooloffisher.blogspot.com/

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  6. I see most of the posts are from 6th, 7th and 8th grade classes. Anyone tried a fifth grade class and if so, how well did that work?

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    Replies
    1. I'm sure they would work well in 5th grade too. Are you on Pinterest? Here's the link to my Math Notebook Board: http://pinterest.com/k8ekakes/math-notebook. I'm sure you could use some of the ideas in 5th grade.

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  7. I am trying interactive notebooks this year, and I am definitely using your guidelines with my students! I gave you a shout out on my (new) blog today and gave the link to your tpt store! I love your ideas, and I'm your newest follower!

    www.theteacherwhohatedmath.blogspot.com

    Brittany

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much! I just started following your blog too.

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  8. I'm math teacher for K-12, and i am exiting found this topic. I would like to try it next year for my students. I hope that It'll be work to my students.

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  9. Katie, thank you SO MUCH for posting this! I'm planning on using INBs in my drama classroom this year, and this was SUPER helpful for me! Your guidelines are fabulous, and they definitely inspired my own. Now I can't wait to get started!

    - Emily
    dramainthemiddle.wordpress.com

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