Interactive notebooks have changed the way I teach in my classroom. I started off only using them for math skills. I noticed my students were really engaged and used them as a reference tool before tests or when they weren't sure how to complete a problem. I quickly realized what a valuable tool they were and began integrating them into my language arts, as well. Now, I can't imagine teaching without them.
Before school starts, I glue notebook covers onto each student's notebook. I also cut, glue, and insert the tabs we will use to help organize our notebooks. This is a very time consuming process, but necessary. If the notebooks are NOT set up in a friendly, organized manner, it makes it very difficult for the students to refer back to them during the year. All my interactive notebooks come with the appropriate covers and tabs needed to help your students be as organized as possible. Last year, I also added an envelope to the back cover for small and loose pieces. This was a game changer for those students who always need extra time to finish.
Example Math Pages:
Each page has the Common Core standard written in kid-friendly "I Can" language that is glued to the top of the notebook page. When necessary, terms and vocabulary are defined with examples for students to refer back to. I have my students cut these out and glue them at the bottom of the page.
Example pictures are included for every page in each notebook. This is to give you, the teacher, an example of how the page can be used. However, I always say, you know your students best and should make sure to use the activities to best suit your students' needs.
I have to admit, when I first started using interactive notebooks I didn't use a rubric. I modeled how the pages should be completed and explained my expectations, but there was no visual reference for the students to refer to besides my model page. Most of my classes were OK with that. However, this year was a bit different. My students needed the rubric to be successful. So, I created this kid-friendly rubric for each of them to glue into the inside of the front cover of their notebook.
They would "grade" themselves on all their pages they completed. Once a week, I would have them choose one page they wanted me to look at and comment on. Of course, I looked at all the pages, but I only commented on the one page they chose.
I LOVE using task cards in my classroom!! They provide such a versatile way to review skills quickly and in a meaningful way. My students love to grab a set of cards and a recording sheet. Sometimes they work with a partner. Sometimes they work independently. Sometimes we work on them as a whole class. But no matter how they are being used, the kids are engaged and learning!
This is a common sight in my classroom. As soon as I make a new set of task cards, the laminator comes out of its box and I begin prepping the set for my kiddos. You should hear the kids..."New task cards? Yay! When do we get to use them?" They L-O-V-E them!
I keep all my task card sets on metal rings. I hang the skills we are working on, along with a few review concepts on hooks in my classroom. This makes it easy for the kids to independently grab what they need to work on. When they are finished, the find the corresponding answer sheet I keep in our task card binder and correct their work. When we work on a set as a whole group, I project the cards for everyone to see. Then, they record their answers on the provided student recording sheet. We always discuss our answers and correct as we go.
Are you ready to get started with interactive notebooks and task cards in your classroom? To help get you started, I have put all my INTERACTIVE NOTEBOOKS and TASK CARD sets on sale this weekend for 20% off!!! You can grab also both of these FREEBIES below, by heading over to my FACEBOOK Page, like my page, and click on the Summer Stock Up buttons.
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