|All ready to go for setting up our notebooks!|
Today (and tomorrow) were spent setting up our interactive notebooks. One thing I regret, actually, is setting them up so soon. I had multiple students in each class who didn't have the three subject spiral notebook that we will be using this year (even though it was on the supply list), and so I'm going to have to go back with them next week in seminar to make sure they have it all together. In retrospect I should have waited until the second week of school to get them all set up, but live and learn.
|Table of Contents|
One thing I think every single math notebook I looked at had was a table of contents, so we made sure to put that in. Here is what mine looked like after I filled it in with everything. This is my teacher example - I do everything ahead of time in this one to test it out first, and I can refer to it when I'm trying to show students the finished product. I complete one notebook with every class as well, but this is essentially my planning one. The students don't have quite as much written in theirs yet. We made four pages for table of contents, just to make sure we had enough to last the year. For each entry they have to put the date, the topic, and the page number.
|Math Notebook Guidelines|
Next, we put in our notebook rules. I found this on pintrest, and loved that it had a reason to go with every rule. I bought a copy from teachers pay teachers, and shrank it so it would fit on half a sheet. There is a pledge on the bottom saying they will try their best to follow the rules. (Her blog, Middle School Math Madness!, is also full of great ideas!)
I also found this from someone else, but can't remember who - I made my syllabus into a pamphlet, and then we glued it into our notebooks. You just have to make sure you leave the back blank, since that is the part you glue down. Now students can find all the class information and most of my major policies at any point during the year!
I also decided to have them glue in all the standards for Math 7, and we are going to go back and check them off as we learn them. I think they were a little surprised at how many there were, and I hope they will be proud at the end of the year after we've crossed them all off.
Goals for the School Year
I had the students individually come up with three goals for this school year. They could choose goals that had to do with being a better student overall (i.e. write down all of my homework), or goals that applied only to math class (i.e. learn all my math facts). I'm looking forward to reading these! Some of them were a little apprehensive, and others asked if they could use one of mine (stay organized).
|Multiplication Chart (0-12)|
The last thing we added during our initial set up was a multiplication chart (0-12). While I feel like students should know their multiplication facts by now, not all of them do. We will work on them throughout this year, but in the meantime a multiplication chart is a great tool for them to refer back to. I gave each student a sheet of graph paper, and they had to make their own chart.
We are also going to add a small manila folder (I finally found them at the store) to the back cover of their notebooks. This will be a place for them to keep small pieces that they've cut out but haven't glued down yet so they aren't lost. I am also thinking about adding a envelope so they have somewhere to keep their math bucks, but I think I may leave that up to the individual student.
Something I need to remember to do is take my time getting them set up. My first class went very well, but my second class was a bit of a mess, and it was my fault. They had ten less minutes to set it up to start with because lunch ran over (one of the joys of the beginning of the year), and then we had a lock down drill. I was trying to speed the process along, and that wasn't a good decision - students were confused, and things didn't get set up exactly like mine is. On top of that, I still didn't get through everything. You would think I would learn by now that somethings are just better left to the next day, but nope! At least now I'm learning that it's my fault when that happens, not my classes' fault. I'm not too stressed about it though; we will just make sure everyone is on the same page when we start the next activity, and slow the pace down.
Does anyone else use interactive notebooks? What do you do at the beginning of the year to set them up?