I love seeing all the creative ways teachers use interactive notebooks in their classrooms but I’ve always felt that they’re more for older students because of all the different pieces and specific places to glue. (If you’ve ever used glue with kindergarten, you know what I’m talking about – total mess!) But this year, I was determined to make interactive notebooks work for my kindergarten class. For my first interactive notebook experience, I chose to use them in science however, these tips would work in any subject!
Tips to Making Interactive Notebooks Work in Kindergarten
Setting Up Your Interactive Notebooks
- Use a full-page label sheet to for the front cover. (This tip comes from Ashley at Teach Create Motivate.) I designed my cover to say Science Notebook with two scientists and a place for students to write their name. When I was ready to put these covers on my student’s notebooks, I printed them on these full-page labels which you put in your printer just like a regular paper. Then I trimmed the sides to fit and stuck it on the front, just like a giant sticker!
- Glue a front cover for every unit or sub topic. My science curriculum has multiple units so each unit has different cover inside the notebook and that’s how we know everything after that cover page belongs to that unit. Some teachers use tabs to separate units or subtopics. I don’t do this because once we’re done with a science unit we don’t come back to it so there’s no need for students to tab back.
- Trim the actual interactive notebook pages that go in the notebook. This makes one less step for students and saves a ton of time!
- Give your students one page at a time. If you give them the background page plus any other pages where you need to cut and glue or fold, things get jumbled and at least one kiddo is going to cut something that shouldn’t be cut.
- Model, model, model! Of course this goes for literally everything in kindergarten but especially for the tricky interactive notebook pages.
- Help your students find the next page. You wouldn’t believe how many interactive notebook pages I’ve had to pull out because a student just opened his notebook and plopped it down wherever it opened.
Although interactive notebooks can be tricky to navigate with the younger students, it’s totally possible with these tips and tricks! What would you add to this list?
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