Category : High School

Five Ways to Use Interactive Notebooks in Your Classroom

What is an Interactive Notebook?
I’m sure you’ve heard about Interactive Notebooks by now, but let’s just review a bit in case you haven’t heard about them yet. Interactive Notebooks are a way that your students can interact with the subjects you are teaching them. They can cut, paste, draw, expand and really experience the subject they are learning. No two interactive notebooks are created equally. Some may say they are interactive, but they aren’t. Some may have too much cutting and pasting, which will interrupt your lesson plans. The best way to judge them is to look at previews and read all of the details before you purchase one.

Five Ways to Use Interactive Notebooks
1. Review and Test Prep – A lot of the reasons I started making and using interactive notebooks is because if you have a printable you use with your students, the students finish it and toss it into folder never to look at it again. With my interactive notebooks, the activities are designed to have the students come back and review what they’ve just learned. There are flaps, envelopes, yarn, brads and more all specifically used to help your students redo activities for test prep and to show their parents what they’ve learned.

2. Confidence Booster – Using an interactive notebook, your students can keep all of the things they’ve learned throughout the year in one place. Students can look through all of the different things they’ve learned and feel achieved.

3. Introducing New Topics – You can use the activities in an interactive notebook to help students learn new topics. Sometimes students are scared about learning new things. A fun activity will help relax them and allow them to learn new topics (especially fractions which can be frustrating for students).

4. Assessments – You can use the activities to finish up a unit. Instead of or in addition to a quiz, you can have students do an interactive activity to make sure they understand the concepts that you taught in the lessons.

5. Spice Up Lessons – If your students get bored with a topic (you know it’s bound to happen), you can pull out an interactive activity and use a little art and interactiveness to spice up your lessons.

If you’re interested in looking at my interactive notebooks, you can find them here. They have the perfect combination of low prep and high interactiveness.

Here are a few of my best sellers, you can click on the picture to see more information and a preview about each:

3 Reasons Why You Should Use Interactive Notebooks with Higher Level Math Classes

prealgebra interactive notebook

Some people might think interactive notebooks are only for younger students. Some people believe that learning pre-algebra, geometry and algebra should be taught through worksheets and videos and other means. I think that Interactive Notebooks have their place with these upper grade classes as well. Here are my three reasons why I think you should use higher level math subjects.

1. Many students today are young when they take pre-algebra, algebra and geometry. When I was in school students didn’t take algebra until they were in high school. Today, students start take algebra as young as 11 and 12 years old. They are still young and would enjoy learning in a fun and interactive way.

2. Even students in high school are still young at heart and would just love some school work outside of the norm. Sure, there might be some students that might roll their eyes at the work, but they probaly would roll their eyes at anything.

3. It gives students a sense of accomplishment. Students can reflect on what they’ve learn and can also study for test using their interactive notebook.

Here are some of my own Interactive Math Notebooks for higher level math classes:
8th Grade Math
Pre-Algebra
Algebra
Geometry

math

interactive algebra

Geometry Interactive Notebook

I’ve been making interactive notebook since 2013. I love making them, I love using them, I love everything about interactive notebooks, especially interactive math notebooks. So, I’d like to take this time to introduce my latest interactive math notebook – Geometry Interactive Notebook!

Like my other interactive notebooks, I’ve made this one with both students and teachers in mind. The activities are fun for students, but highly educational and relevant! Almost all of the activities are made in such a way that students can go back and use their interactive notebooks to review before a test or for the big end of the year exam.

geometry notebook

Here is a list of the topics that are covered:

Foundations of Geometry
Translations, Rotations & Reflections
Dilations
Congruent Triangles
Geometry Theorems
Finding Angles
Properties of Parallelograms
Similar Triangles
Advanced Similar Triangles
Pythagorean Theorem
Solid Geometry
Cross Sections of 3D Objects
Rotating Shapes
Midpoint Formula
Dividing Line Segments
Parallel and Perpendicular Lines
Circles
Arc Measurements
Arc Length
Radians & Degrees
Radians & Arc Length
Sectors
Inscribed Angles and Shapes

geometry 4

There are answer keys included. Also, extra blank foldables and cut-outs are included so you can create your own if you are working on something else that is not covered.

geometry notebook2

Foldables are age appropriate, cool, but not too cute. Check out a more detailed preview here.

geometry notebook3

For more information about my latest interactive notebook click here: Geometry Interactive Notebook

Four Reasons Why Interactive Math Notebooks are Beneficial for Older Students

Interactive notebooks have been the rage for the last few years, mainly for younger grades. I think they are actually beneficial for students from Kinder through 12th grade and here are my reasons.

#1 – Students can take the time to reflect on what they’ve learned and come back to the concept at a later time to review. When I was in middle school and high school, math was easy for me. However, it wasn’t easy for everyone in my class. (And I have to admit I had other subjects that were difficult for me, but that’s another post in itself). Fractions and algebra are really difficult for some students to grasp. Once they do grasp the concepts, they are golden, but the initial hook can be difficult. Because of the difficult concepts taught in middle school and high school, I believe that interactive notebooks can help students to grasp the concepts. Many of my interactive notebooks have activities where students can review what they’ve learned and that is key especially when they are studying for end of the year (or course) tests.

interactive notebook prealgebra

#2 – Visual learners can learn quicker with interactive notebooks because they are so visual. Not everyone is visual, but many students are and interactive notebooks will help them to learn the concepts quicker due to the nature of interactive notebooks.

interactive notebook prealgebra2

#3 – Interactive Notebooks give them a sense of achievement. At the end of the school year students empty out their backpacks and look at what they’ve done. They will probably just toss out worksheets, and they may even toss out their interactive notebook, but I guarantee that they will take a second be proud of what they’ve done.

interactive notebook prealgebra4

#4 – Older students are still kids and like to have fun. Who likes to do boring worksheets? Not me and not my students, but they sure do love to do interactive notebooks regardless of their age. It’s fun to have a foldable or a cool cut-out that hides the answer or helps them to solve the problem.

interactive notebook prealgebra3

Here are my Interactive Math Notebooks for Older Grades:
Interactive Math Notebook for 6th grade
Interactive Math Notebook for 7th grade
Interactive Math Notebook for 8th grade
Interactive Math Notebook for Pre-Algebra
Interactive Math Notebook for Algebra
Interactive Math Notebook for Geometry

Have a great school year everyone!