This was a great set of articles and teacher tools for me to use this coming school year! Thank you! First of all, the 3 articles essentially tell how Science notebooks are valuable tools for both teachers and students to use before, during, and after their interactive lesson. I use science notebooks, but embarrassingly enough, more like a diary instead of learning tool. I love the graphic organizers provided through the FOSS article, and the grade level ideas for using notebooks. Science Notebooks provide a venue as thinking tools, writing format, and time stamp when kept over years.
I have a mantra that guides me in deciding projects or lessons to teach, books to use, alternating subject areas, and how much time to spend on each to hold my students’ interests and get them to learn something new: more bang for the buck! Incorporating the expository writing options makes me so excited to incorporate writing in with an activity the students are loving! Teachers say all the time that they don’t know how to get kids to write more and that it takes so much time! What a great plan to imbed this weak skill set into a subject they cannot get enough of!
One and only one disadvantage I see to using this student tool is the time it takes for students to work in them. I am thinking each group I have has students that work faster than others. I have the detail mongers who do their best work slowly and in an articulating fashion. While writing though, those students could take their notebook from my class to their other classroom, finishing at recess or during free time. (taking them home and expecting return the next day is risky) I also am thinking of just a couple of my students who might appreciate viewing the powerpoint as a guide for set-up of their notebook and then personalizing it based on key sections and details I expect them to include.
Using notebooks for differentiated learning should appeal to all teachers-it sure does to me! The oldest article you had us read was of utmost importance to me with the tips and additional resources provided at the end. Point 2, where the teachers could read students’ notes then provide teaching lessons on how to create a graph to record what they were explaining through word or picture, was a great stop point for additional chances to teach further organization and response.
Students need to be active in their learning and Science is a subject that provides a platform for that. They can show that they own the material and grasp the process for phenomena. Evidence-based ideas can lead to creative leaps or wonderments that spur students into further questioning and discovery! I plan to use these ideas and guides for use in my science units this year. I am so excited to use them!