Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Many Thanks & Setting up Interactive Notebooks

Before I begin, I need to thank EVERYONE who took the time out to read the last post on Ruby-doo. Thanks to everyone's efforts, we raised over $3900! Thank you Thank you Thank you for your generosity! Her mother was surprised and speechless. She wanted us to share her gratitude!

The newest craze in education a few years ago was moving towards interactive notebooks.

I am only going to focus on the general notebook for the post. If you have taught at any level of elementary school, you know that children have a very difficult time staying organized. In the past, I have tried folders. Unfortunately, 4 months after school has started those wonderful folders begin to fall apart. I have tried binders because they were more sturdy. Nope, that didn't work because then I would find sheets of paper in the wrong section, paper in a desk, or even the occasional work period on the floor.

So... this was my solution to the madness!

Because I have two classes, I use different duck tape to separate the two classes. I place a strip of duck tape on the left side of their composition notebooks.

The second step is placing a label. One thing I have learned about composition notebooks is that the front cover is not very pencil friendly.

Depending on the subject, I spend the first week of school setting up notebooks. All of the notebooks have a table of contents. Table of contents are great. It keeps the kids organized, they know where to look for topics, and they are held responsible for keeping track of it.

The Table of Contents below is from Writer's Workshop. (By the way, I always model, model, model. Modeling is a HUGE step!)

In the past I have separated notebooks by topics. This year, for readers and writers, I separated the notebooks by units. However, for skills (grammar) I separate them by topics like nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.

There are many ways to separate pages. This year I used post it tab dividers. In the past I have used small Post its. To use the sticky notes, place the sticky on the bottom and write the title on the top. It works the same as Post it Tabs, except they are not a sturdy.

I have really enjoyed using these in class. My next few posts are going to be on how these are used in the class and different ways to make them special. I use these for Reading, Writing, an Grammar/Skills. It has been a work in progress, but in the end they have been the best option for keeping everything organized and together.

My next blog post will probably answer questions like: Where do they place worksheets? What about a project or page they are working on?

No worries, stay tuned, and hopefully I will answer all of your questions when it comes to use these in ELA.

Happy Blogging