Interactive Notebooks provide a participatory learning experience for students of all grade and ability levels. Here are some tips and ideas for using Interactive Notebooks right from our TpT Teacher-Authors:

Who’s Using Interactive Notebooks?

One Extra Degree: Teachers Pay Teachers
One Extra Degree

One Extra Degree reports, “I began utilizing Interactive Notebooks with my students for several reasons. They are interactive, and engagement is half of the battle in today’s classrooms. I also LOVE that I am able to naturally differentiate for my students through the use of my flap books.”

Check out One Extra Degree’s Interactive Notebooks: Flap Books to Enhance Journaling {Reading Workshop}

What Are Interactive Notebooks Great For?

Ann Fausnight: Teachers Pay Teachers
Ann Fausnight

Differentiation: Ann Fausnight says, “My favorite tip about interactive notebooks is that you can differentiate the foldables, etc. without the kids even knowing it. One group may need to do one less step because you already provided it for them. One group may do an additional step.”

Take a look at Ann’s Lab Equipment Foldable.


Arlene Manemann: Teachers Pay Teachers
Arlene Manemann

Left Brain/Right Brain Learning: Arlene Manemann offers this advice, “I love interactive notebooks—and so do the students. I find it best to connect the notebooks with action in the classroom. We use left brain/right brain (left and right side of the notebook). The left is used for more creative lessons.”

Take a moment to see Arlene’s Civil War Battles: Tri-fold Research Report, great for middle and high school ISNs!

Some Interactive Notebook Tips From the Pros:

Deanna Jump: Teachers Pay Teachers
Deanna Jump

Glue It: Deanna Jump reports that Elmer’s is the glue to use and that it helps to teach the kids HOW to glue before giving them their journal.

“We practice a lot with making appropriate size dots of glue before they ever get their journal. I love the poem, ‘A dot, a dot, a dot will do.  Anymore that that is too much glue!'”

Do take a look at Deanna’s latest resource, Interactive Reading Journal Notebook for K-2 {Common Core Aligned}.

Lovin Lit: Interactive Student Notebooks
Lovin Lit

Book It: The Lovin Lit says, “Interactive notebooks! Oh I could say so much.”

For the item itself, “composition notebooks are best. This is because pages will fall out of spiral notebooks too easily.” (And on the subject of glue usage, she says, “NO TOASTER STRUDELING! (you know what I’m talking about!)”)

If you need some help getting started, check out Lovin Lit’s Making Inferences ISN product. It’s FREE!

4 the Love of Math: Teachers Pay Teachers
4 the Love of Math

Color Code: Use colors to differentiate different topics/ideas. 4 the Love of Math says: “I use colors to represent different steps of solving a problem. If it’s something I can divide into seven steps, we’ll use the colors of the rainbow. When students are working on the problems later they will say things like ‘I forgot the blue step.’ The colors are like a hint for students until they get comfortable solving the types of problems on their own.”

Check out 4 the Love of Math’s Naming Polynomials resource that includes a foldable.

There’s a whole lot more to share about Interactive Notebooks. Keep an eye out for additional blog posts and consider trying an Interactive Notebook approach in your classroom.

Interactive Notebook