Elementary Science

Classroom Library and Notebooks

Sun Aug 13, 2017 6:56 PM

I am an elementary science specialist.

As I prepare for the upcoming school year, I am thinking of making the following changes in my lab:

1. Reorganizing the classroom library by NGSS DCI

2. Using flexible three-ring binders instead of composition books as science notebooks

Thoughts, ideas, other feedback?

Juliette Guarino Berg
Juliette Guarino
158 Activity Points

Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:14 AM

I appreciate the use of three-ring binders for class materials, I still think composition notebooks are better for science notebooks since they are more flexible for use, easier to take outside, carry around while observing, and you can attach handouts on pages, even make a handout pocket in the back.

One teacher has the left pages be teacher notes, materials, etc, and right pages be students' observations, experiments, etc.

Another way though to use 3-ring binders for science notebooks is to make pamphlets for each science topic that students can use with a clipboard or something, then put into the binder.

Bev DeVore-Wedding
Beverly DeVore-Wedding
3370 Activity Points

Mon Aug 14, 2017 4:01 PM

Have you had any experience using foldables in notebooks? What about spiral notebook vs. composition book?

Juliette Guarino Berg
Juliette Guarino
158 Activity Points

Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:16 PM

I have used Foldables in Notebooks for elementary and middle school students. I really like them and the
students like them as well. Foldables gives students another opportunity to use their hands to engage with
science content. They are cutting, folding, gluing and making sense of the content. You can't go wrong with 

LeRoy Attles
LeRoy Attles
56470 Activity Points

Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:16 PM

Do you have any references or suggestions for getting started with foldables? Thanks!

Juliette Guarino Berg
Juliette Guarino
158 Activity Points

Fri Aug 18, 2017 6:43 PM


There are several sites with foldables on a google search - such as West Virginia Department of Education collection! I am taking a great class through the University of Utah and the Marriott Library book program for educators - it has amazing ideas.

The big thing I keep in mind is "Who is doing the work?" Are the students planning, sorting, and conveying information, etc. As a teacher, I really value their being able to think about how to illustrate and explain the concept they are learning.

As to notebooks - we have different preferences depending on teacher and grade level. Some spiral, some composition. None with notebooks. I personally love sketch books. I think it is wonderful for students to see all the potentials and possible formats -- then as they progress they will find ones that merge with their thinking patterns.

Teach on;


Wendi Laurence
Wendi Laurence
1235 Activity Points

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