Saturday, November 24, 2012

Science Notebooking Ideas

A few things I am learning about science notebooking:

  1. Students take pride in making their notebook neat and usable.  
  2. Students want to use their notebooks daily.  
  3. Students appreciate how their notebooks take the place of a textbook.  
  4. Students want and need to be encouraged to keep their notebooks organized.  
  5. Although it is a great strategy, using left side/right side doesn't work for everyone.  There are many ways to get the most out of notebooking.  Customize your own strategies for each of your classes.
  6. Teachers should keep a model notebook.  This helps students with learning creative ways to glue in foldables or activity sheets.  
  7. Make copies or photos of student notebook pages of notes, drawings, etc. and add them to your own teacher notebook.  This will save time from having to write your own notes in your notebook and it showcases student work.  Students will take pride in making their drawings extra neat in hopes that their teacher will choose their page to be showcased!  
  8. Make notebooking enjoyable for all!  The best way to do this is by using creative activities with notebooking.  Allow the students to get creative as long as they don't lose focus of their learning target.  

A few pictures from student notebooks... 

A very simple Table of Contents:
There are some wonderful pre-made ToC available online.  But this year I allowed my students to create their own and so far so good!  

This is an example from last year when I still used left side/right side notebooking.  This looks great and works very well with left/ride side notebooking.  

A simple circle map after an introduction of the Periodic Table: 

Density Cube Lab:  I decreased the size of the lab sheets to 64%.  This made it possible for students to fit both forms on one page of their notebook which allowed room on another page for reflection.  

Write it out:  Sometimes, at the end of class, I'll have the students write our their thoughts from the day's lesson.  I give them about 10 minutes to write in their notebooks.  Then I begin the next class by looking over what they wrote.  This gives me a pretty good gauge of whether or not they met the learning target.  

Foldables!  Glue them in so they won't get lost.  

 Diagrams:  Students love to draw and color.  Make it meaningful and it is a win-win lesson.  

Q & A:  I like to give my students some essential questions for the day's lesson.  Instead of making them feel it's just another worksheet, we incorporate it into their notebooks.  This can even serve as a study guide later on.  Another plus is that students aren't spending 20 minutes copying down questions.  

Another Thinking Map: 

 Amazing foldable!  

Color Coding the Periodic Table: 

Best phase change foldable I've ever seen!  

Adding extra notes to an already filled foldable:  We wanted to add notes from the "Properties Song."

Another example of a "Write it Out" 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath - Classroom Decor....

This is my first attempt at making a spiral deco-mesh wreath.  I wanted to try it out before spending the extra money to make Christmas wreaths for my home.  So I decided to make one for my classroom.  I honestly had no idea that it would be as HUGE as it is!  Each time I look at it I want to scream "It's so FLUFFY!!!!" Now I only hope I can keep myself from trying to embellish it some more...more ribbon?  Maybe a monogram? Possibly a science sign?  Or maybe I should just stop before the wreath grows out of control?