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Brightspark Blog

April 21, 2016 | 8:00 AM

What Is an Interactive Student Notebook? Resources for Beginners

Written by Brightspark Travel


Given the nature of student travel, it should come as no surprise that we’re all for hands-on learning. We love interactive student notebooks (ISNs) because they encourage an active approach both in and out of the classroom, and we wanted to share the best resources on the subject.

So what is an interactive student notebook anyway?
Though individual teachers often put their own twists on them, ISNs are divided between an “input” side and an “output” side. The input side features class notes, instructions, handouts — basically any testable information. The output side often features an activity that encourages students to explore the concepts discussed in class. For more information, please see this overview on interactive student notebooks.

How should an interactive student notebook be set up?
The majority of pages will be filled with input notes and output activities, but the front and back will hold items such as a table of contents, vocabulary terms and grade record sheets. This blog does an excellent job of outlining the set up.

What are some ideas for activities on the output side of the notebook?
Your choice of activities is closely related to your subject and individual lesson plans. This website provides ideas for activities in language arts, social studies, science and math.

Is an interactive student notebook right for me?
ISNs do take a lot of prep-work, foresight and organization. However, if you make sure to plan your notebook in an efficient manner, the benefits are many. ISNs encourage students to use recently-acquired knowledge in new ways, appeal to multiple learning styles and can serve as reference guides. See other benefits here.

Topics: Classroom Resources

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