Interactive Student Notebook

What is the purpose of the Interactive Student Notebook?

The Interactive Student Notebook (ISNB) enables students to be a creative, independent thinkers and writers. ISNB’s will be used for class notes as well as for other activities where you will be asked to express your own ideas and process the information presented by this class. As students work with the notebook, it becomes a well organized portfolio or their work, thoughts, and beliefs. This notebook is different from traditional notebooks due to the fact that it provides activities of a variety of learning styles, mixture of the Multiple Intelligences, and tasks all geared to how our brains work best.

What materials will I use?

To create an Interactive Student Notebook, you must have these item available for class each day:

1. Mead 5 Star 8½ x11 inch spiral notebook, 100 sheets, college ruled with a plastic cover and inside front pocket.

2. blue, black, and red ink pens

3. #2 pencil with an eraser

5. 12 count set of colored pencils

6. 8 count set of thin (fine) tip markers  (Most markers will not work because they bleed through the page.

7. several glue sticks

8. miscellaneous supplies: small scissors, self collecting pencil sharpener, eraser, 12″ ruler

How do I use this notebook?

The interactive notebook encourages students to record information in an organized fashion. We divide the notebook into two different sides: left side activities and right side activities.

Right Side: The right side of the notebook is the “input” side or the teacher side. It contains the key information for the unit such as TCI notes, two column notes, mind-maps, T-charts, reading notes, graphs and charts, flowcharts, visual diagrams of historical information, and sketches of slides. Typically all “testable” information is found here.

Left Side: The left side of the notebook is the “output” side or the student side.  The left side is primarily used for processing new ideas and information. Students work out an understanding of new material by using illustrations, diagrams, flow charts, poetry, matrices, cartoons, and the like. Students explore their opinions and clarify their values on controversial issues, wonder about “what if” hypothetical situations and ask questions about new ideas. They also express their feelings and reactions to activities that tap into intrapersonal learning. The activities on this side are POP’S, Preview Or Processing assignments. It will either preview what they will learn or process new information. Several of the activities on this side include:

Working It Out:  An activity that will ask you to present new ideas in a way that is meaningful to you. In this category, you will write poems, essays, letters, and eulogies. You will create comic strips, political cartoons, sensory figures, or song lyrics. “Working It Out” assignments will allow you to choose what you have learned.

Here I Stand:  An activity in which you will be asked to state conclusions and well-supported personal opinions about the materials we have studied in class. “Here I Stand” writings should demonstrate your mastery of the subject we are studying.

Warm Ups:  At the beginning of the period you may be asked to complete a “Warm Up”.  These may or may not be related to something we are currently studying in class.  Often these short written assignments are based on current events, another class, or something just for fun to write about.


How will the notebook be organized?

The Interactive Student Notebook is divided into units of study based on the World History curriculum. In the front of the notebook, you will create a Table of Contents.   The Table of Contents also serves as an assignment sheet, where you will record the date an assignment is given and when it is due.

How will I be graded?

Your notebook will be graded in two ways.  First, assignments in the within the notebook are scored for their completion.  Second, assignments are also scored for their quality. Students can expect their notebooks to be collected from time to time for grading.  Your best work should go into all of your assignments.

What happens if I am absent?

If you are absent, it is your responsibility to see visit the “What did I Miss?” area of the classroom.  Here you will find the class agenda, interactive student notebook, and assignment crate. This agenda binder contains the details on what you missed. ISNB page number organizes the assignment crate.  It holds copies of the notes, activities, and assignments. If you missed lecture notes you are to copy the notes into your own notebook and return the notes to the crate when finished.

What if I lose my notebook?

Only four or five notebooks are lost a year and usually by the same people. If you lose the notebook, let me know as soon as possible so I can post it. Check all your classes and the lost and found in the office. Bring loose-leaf paper or a spare notebook to class to use.  Almost every notebook is found, though some are not found for many weeks. Since much of your grade is made up of the notebook and your grade will suffer quite a blow without the work, set up a time to meet with me after a week of looking for the lost notebook and we can determine how to make up the work.

Parents/Guardians: How do you know how your child is doing in Social Studies?

With so many classes in middle school it can be challenging to determine the progress of your child in an individual class. Students are expected to share their Interactive Student Notebook with you on a regular basis. Throughout the year students will add quizzes, tests, scoring rubrics and other information that will require your signature.  This is done in an effort for you to gauge their progress throughout the year. Sharing should consist of the child and interested party sitting down, reading, and discussing their work for a short amount of time. The emphasis is on the student initiating the conversation, though it would be helpful if you would inquire. (Note to Students: This is not an opportunity for your parents/guardians to do your work, but a time to share what is completed or give assistance.) I know I am asking quite a bit from both of you especially since this is the time period in which preteens are developing independence and might become testy when asked. I believe with this communication line open, the student can only succeed. Please read their work, especially the left side activities, since this is the collection of your students understanding of World History.

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One Response to Interactive Student Notebook Comments (RSS) Comments (RSS)

  1. Charles Haynes want us to understand the religions of others because people would understand other people religions more better and get to know their religion more.

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