I didn’t want to talk too much the first week of school, which were only four days due to Labor Day weekend. I learned it was a bad habit when on one end of the year survey several students commented about how much I talked on the first day of school. Yeah, kids were commenting about the first day of school in June! I used to talk so much that they never got over it!
So this year I added more activities to my Intro Prezi because on day 1 I still gave myself a lot to say. So I started with a paper puzzle activity on day one and then the famous Marshmallow Challenge after that (I’ve been starting with the Marshmallow Challenge, the paper puzzle activity was new for me this year and it was great!). Both were fun and engaging!
The second week of school the 6th grade team, along with a LOT of help since there are only three of us, took most of our students on a four-hour bus drive to Camp Cispus near Randle, WA in the gorgeous Gifford Pinchot National Forest for a three-and-a-half day and three night camping/outdoor education experience! That was an exciting week!
So this week, our third week together, I was finally ready to get my students started on setting up their Science notebooks. Even though I use an online Learning Management System (LMS) and all my students have access to devices in room to make use of Google Apps for Education (GAFE) including Google Classroom, having a notebook is essential. I haven’t been able to go completely paperless. I attended a training this summer as part of my Olympic STEM Pathways Partnership (OSPP) work and learned a couple of new handy dandy tricks to make notebooking in my Science classes go even more smoothly than ever. That is really great because it has not been going smoothly! Kids do strange things when working in their notebooks! I was a bit astonished to find many 6th graders skip pages and do not go in order when working in their notebooks. It makes finding notes and data a nightmare! I also started using Science Openers at the beginning of class and noticed too late that kids were mixing their openers with their lab notes, observation and data!
Another problem I find is that when kids put handouts in their notebooks and do not have glue sticks or forget to glue them in, they fall out very easily. So this year I got kids started setting up their notebooks then made available the following video to allow them to finish setting up their notebooks at their own pace. The video is on my LMS so all my students have access to it.
Now kids are putting handouts in the back of their notebooks!
We haven’t put ribbons in to use as bookmarks yet but I’m looking forward to that. No more seeing kids flip through countless pages to find where they left off the day before! Well, one can hope. :)
At the OSPP training they bought us each a copy of Writing in Science in Action. It is full of ideas for fully integrating notebooking into your Science classes. I haven’t read through all of it but the parts we used at the summer training were quite helpful.
So if you’re looking a couple of new notebooking ideas I hope the ribbon bookmark and the back of notebook pocket can help.
What notebooking tips and tricks do you have?