Science Sampler: Science interactive notebooks in the classroomby: Jocelyn Young

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When students make observations and explain them in writing, they clarify and organize their thoughts and ideas. Keeping science interactive notebooks is a technique for increasing student understanding and organizing their learning. Further, by using interactive notebooks, students model one of the most vital and enduring functions of scientists in all disciplines—recording information, figures, and data. The guidelines presented here emphasize the many benefits that science interactive notebooks bring to the classroom.

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Reviews (7)
  • on Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:42 PM

This article does a wonderful job at explaining the importance of using interactive notebooks in science as well as providing a how to for the notebooks. The most important piece that I found interesting while reading was that using these notebooks allows for the student to assume the role of a scientist while inserting data and research that the student is inquiring through their class. This also allows for a spot for the student to put his or her notes from the teacher as well as a spot for them to expand upon their learning and to write down their thoughts and notes. Currently in my college early childhood science methods course we are using interactive notebooks, and it truly is a wonderful way for me to put down all of my findings as well as my thoughts in one place.

Victoria Wilt
Victoria Wilt

  • on Sat Aug 17, 2013 12:01 PM

I've always used science notebooks, but having left the science classroom for a couple of years I wanted to make sure I got the most out of them this year. I loved the simple rubric and the left/right approach to input/output.

Kendra Young  (Ringgold, GA)
Kendra Young (Ringgold, GA)

  • on Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:15 PM

This article describes how to use interactive notebooks in a science classroom. The author provides reasons to use the notebooks, tips for successful employing the notebooks, and a rubric to evaluate student achievement. This is an excellent article for any teacher who is looking for a tutorial to effective implement interactive notebooks into his/her classroom.

Maureen Stover  (Seaside, CA)
Maureen Stover (Seaside, CA)

  • on Mon May 20, 2019 8:26 PM

I loved the rubric in this article! What a great way to explain how to implement ISN's, and the importance of utilizing them in the classroom.


  • on Sun May 03, 2015 7:50 AM

I appreciate the start of a conversation about encouraging more student ownership of their learning in the classroom. I would have liked to see more strategies for how to keep a student's notebook complete if they are absent for a short or prolonged period.

Robin Willig  (Rye Brook, NY)
Robin Willig (Rye Brook, NY)

  • on Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:42 PM

The information is very easy to understand and I believe most teachers will have no trouble following or implementing some of the strategies. I agree that once a teacher try out this information they will better be able to modify to fit the needs of their students.

Yolanda Smith-Evans  (Houston, TX)
Yolanda Smith-Evans (Houston, TX)

  • on Wed Apr 20, 2011 10:00 AM

This article explains the in’s and out’s of using interactive notebooks in the classroom. They promote student’s science learning by giving students a chance to enhance their writing skills, appreciating the process of scientific inquiry, learning organizational skills, and more. This is a good introduction to this notebook for someone unfamiliar with their use but each teacher needs to develop a comfort zone with using it and that may take several years.

Adah  (San Antonio, TX)
Adah (San Antonio, TX)

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