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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Math Notebook {Notes}

Update (6/14/13): I have a complete version of this notebook for download here

After my post on Integers, I received a few emails and comments asking for more pictures on the "math notebook". So I've put together a step-by-step walk through on how I use composition books in my classroom to help train my students to take notes, use their notes, and of course not lose their notes. :)

At the beginning of each school year, I have my students but two composition notebooks (wide ruled and graph paper) instead of trying to keep track of loose-leafed paper for notes. I collect them at "Meet the Teacher" night and mark off everyone who has brought them in. I also have spare one incase someone is new, can't afford one, etc. They're really cheap during back to school shopping. Then I set up the first few pages for them to cut down on time in class spent and to ensure that it's set-up the way I want it.  It doesn't take long. here's what I do:

Page 1: This is the cover page. I leave it blank so that students can use their creativity and decorate it (appropriately!) Here's mine:

Page 2: Page 2 is folded in and taped to page 3 to create a "pocket". I do this for students as some of them have trouble doing this step and it's faster for me to just do it for them. I color the pocket opening so that it's easily visible. This is where any papers that we tape/glue into our notebook, etc. can be placed for easy transport to and from school.

Page 4: Pages 4 - 8 are used to set-up the table of contents. This is a great tool to help kids not only take better notes, but to help them learn how to use their resources when they get stuck. I mark off along the margains and title them in order "Date", "Title" and "Page #" (my date is left blank b/c I use mine from year to year). I made each chapter a different color so that it's easy to see where chapter breaks are.

Page 9 Page 9 is where the students will actually start their notetaking, so I start their numbering by writing a "1" on the bottom right corner. Here's two examples of some of the notes I give. The pen is what I write on the board, the pencil is what I lead students in "teaching each other" (I like to interact with my students)


This has worked WONDERS for me. I created each chapter's notes just before I started teaching that chapter. It makes giving notes for absent students easier too, as I just have to go down to the copier and copy it. Students that are absent then don't feel as if they missed too much and they copy my notes into their own notebook.

36 comments:

  1. I just found your blog (via Pintrest)! I am absolutely in love with it! I can't wait to read more about your math journals. I wanted to try them this year, but I may have to start next year. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing!
    Kate
    http://tothesquareinch.wordpress.com/

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  2. I would like to see a pix of the student's working notebook! It looks wonderful.....do they have enough time to take down all those notes and then do the lesson?

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    1. Sure thing! I'll grab a student's notebook tomorrow and upload a picture. It doesn't take too much time. I have 80 minute class periods, so I spend about 30 - 45 mins. teaching/notetaking and the rest is for the math labs, independent and guided practice. I like to teach with kid input and involvement. so this works GREAT for me AND them! They are constantly using it for test reviews, finals, etc. and they will have it next year for Pre-algebra if they need to quickly look something up :)

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    2. I have pictures of the notebook that has been digitalized here: http://www.mathnspire.net/2013/06/interactive-math-notebook-7th-grade.html

      Thanks!

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  3. I LOVE your site! I have a question about your math journal rules...what are they? haha! Could you please take a picture and post it?

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  4. I love the math journals! I want to do one in my class next year. I will definitely be using your as a model. Look forward to reading more on your blog!

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  5. Your math journal is fabulous! I am a homeschooling mom to a 7th grader who despises math. She is a gifted writer, but math is truly a sore spot. Last year we tried something similar to this...we used Danica McKellar's books and treated math lessons more like grammar lessons...taking notes and explaining mathematical procedures in words. I love how organized your journal is and just appealing to look at. Would you be willing to share more of your math notes or the topics covered? What grade are you teaching? Well, once again, your math journal is super and thanks for sharing.

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  6. Wow! I just found your site through Pinterest too, and I can hardly wait to explore! I love these math journals!!!

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  7. OH WOW! Just found your site on Pinterest and I owe you big time. I LOVE your notebook idea - especially with the Table of Contents. I have a soon to be Junior, soon to be 8th grader and a soon to be Kindergartner. They have no idea what's coming - but I am going to create one of these for every single class. THANK YOU!

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  8. Could you please share your Math journal rules? I want to implement a notebook like this, but I don't know where to start!

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  9. I don't really have any "rules" for the notebook, I just stress the importance of taking good notes and tell my students, "If I write it, then YOU need to write it!" The only thing I would say is that be sure to spend part of your first week really walking through your expectations with your students, it will make your job easier in the long run during the school year. Hope that helps! If you have more specific questions, feel free to email me! Thanks!!!

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  10. If you google Interactive Notebooks, you'll find more information that you ever wanted on notebooks like this, lol. I haven't done a math one before, but I am this year. Traditionally, the left is for notes and the right is for processing, but there's no hard/fast rule. I LOVE using them in my room and the table of contents makes the kids become organized.

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  11. I love your pocket idea! It is so helpful to store loose items and papers that we haven't taped down yet. I started making them with my high school math classes. I wrote about it here:
    http://everybodyisageniusblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/isn-set-up.html

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  12. Great post! I do these with students as young as 4th grade. It does take patience, but they eventually get the hang of it...and the students have a great way to review what we did in class (so do the parents!)

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  13. I have been hesitant to try a composition book instead of a big 3 ring binder. But your idea has inspired me to try it out this year. I notice in your table of contents there is a page for my math notebook rules. Do you have a copy of or could you share an outline of these rules?

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  14. Is there any way to know what you have written for each page in your table of contents? I would really like to see these pages. Especially you examples for each topic and your problem solving too! Please?

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    1. I have pictures of the notebook that has been digitalized here: http://www.mathnspire.net/2013/06/interactive-math-notebook-7th-grade.html

      Thanks!

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    2. This link appears to not work any more? is there a new place I could find this?
      I'm a new middle school math teacher with 3 days notice to the start of the school year!!!
      These look fabulous! Thanks so much!

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  15. I am a first time MS Math teacher, and I plan on implementing math notebooks. Like, the previous person, would it be possible to see each page? Thank you! arika.chupp@gmail.com

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    Replies
    1. I have pictures of the notebook that has been digitalized here: http://www.mathnspire.net/2013/06/interactive-math-notebook-7th-grade.html

      Thanks!

      Delete
  16. This might be a silly question, but what does PSI mean?

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    Replies
    1. PSi = "Problem Solving Investigation" :) Not a silly question, a great one!

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  17. Great ideas. I am teaching third grade this year and I am going to try this.
    Thanks!

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  18. This is awesome! I will try to incorporate some form of this. My student do take notes, but not to this degree. I teach 5th grade in an urban school.

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  19. Wow! This is amazing. It is perfect. I love the pocket. What a great idea! I think it is brilliant that you start the notebooks for them. I can see how this saves so much time. I also liked the color change to go with the chapter and creating the note pages for students who are absent. It is all so organized.

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  20. Love this Idea...cant get the picture link to work. Please send me an updated link if possible, or a email with the pictures. Cant wait to get started.
    jirsaboy@yahoo.com

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  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  22. I tried to download your notebook but all I up is an advertising

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  23. the link to your website no longer works. Would you be able to send me the link for your complete notebook at vamos619@yahoo.com

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  24. the link to your website no longer works. Would you be able to send me the link for your complete notebook at vamos619@yahoo.com

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  25. the link to your website no longer works. Would you be able to send me the link for your complete notebook at poornima.manchali@gmail.com

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  26. Love this for my child on the spectrum. His science teacher did this and made a huge difference. Can you email me a copy as the link no longer works. vjtrainer1@gmail.com
    Thank you

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  27. Love this for my child on the spectrum. His science teacher did this and made a huge difference. Can you email me a copy as the link no longer works. vjtrainer1@gmail.com
    Thank you

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    Replies
    1. Did you get a link? I would like one too!

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