Digital Interactive Notebook – Why would I do such a thing?

Today’s Contributor: Katie Moccia
Katie is a science teacher and Campus Innovation Connector at Bailey Middle School.

I’m not going to lie, I wrote about a digital notebook last year for my BLOG, but I can’t help it. I love it and it is working so well! As you can see, from the sentence structure above, I teach science and not English. Middle school science to be exact. THE BEST time in a students life, we’re crazy and the kids are crazy! I honestly do believe it takes a special kinda crazy for each grade, I don’t think I could be anywhere else except 7th grade. 

Last year, amongst all the crazy, amongst all the digital choices, I chose one thing to work on. I forcibly chose a digital version of the old school interactive notebook. We were all at home, no one had cameras on let alone printers/scissors/glue. I stole the idea from Melissa Prepster, how she has all this time and churns out quality engaging lessons is beyond me! What if I was able to create a digital notebook (google slide), own it and share it with each student? Guess what, I can and it works fabulously. 

Pros to online notebook-

  1. No copies to be made
  2. No gluing into, losing paper, leaving notebook at home
  3. A live student copy for me/TA/parent to peak at whenever needed

Cons, so far, to the online notebook-

  1. Takes a bit of time to set up and distribute pages (40 min for the week’s material). I have fine tuned this. I’m just giving the students one notebook each year. We clean it up after each nine weeks. 
  2. You need to have your master notebook ready to give students material ahead of time. 
  3. Takes some time for students to organize their google drive
  4. I think I have forgotten how to write with a pen and paper

I now create a new notebook (google slide) for each student, each grading period, and cut and paste slides from my “Master” notebook. I begged/borrowed/stole the idea for push slides, from Alice Keeler, https://alicekeeler.com/. I create a new notebook for each student through that code, then “ctrl +” which opens multiple tabs at one time and add in the notes that I need the student to complete for that day. If a student is absent or has “copy of notes” in their IEP, I add the notes they missed for that day. The students can take ownership in their own notebook, change fonts, add photos, highlight words,etc.  Below is a link to my presentation and my 1st nine weeks notebook to peak at. Enjoy and stay sane! 

My REMIX BLEND google slide

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/10tf2rsl-P5uVcHUqcl-_PWu3KuVszqy-ruuRpJ39bQI/edit?usp=sharing

My 1st nine weeks 7th science notebook:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1U3jKlC0S8yEDcHBtTd0LlC8bZfD-g9ZNj9ONyQ0ruhg/edit?usp=sharing

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