Starting the School Year Right
The Interactive Student B
How will the ISN make you a better
•Copies of the Student
In a social studies skill builder, students analyze placards Handout B1: Buddy Clock
depicting portions of the interactive student notebook (1 per student)
(ISN) and begin working on putting theirs together. •Copies of Student
Handout B2: ISN Matrix (1
Preview Students complete a “buddy clock” activity to per student)
•Copies of Student
be used in paired activities for this lesson and future Handout B3: ISN
lessons. Guidelines & Expectations
•12 or more folders with
Activity In a Social Studies Skill Builder, pairs study six copies of Placards B1-B6
important components to the interactive student inside.
notebook. Where appropriate, students will begin setting •Glue Sticks
up their own notebook. •Scissors
Processing Students will create a simple editorial •Materials consistent with
cartoon on the topic of the lesson essential question . how you want students to
put together their notebook.
In the course of this lesson and participating classroom
activity, students will
• analyze the importance of working in pairs as a way to
• describe the expectations for setting up a successful
interactive student notebook in your class.
• explain how maintaining a good notebook will allow
them to deepen their understanding of content.
Basic Training: Starting the School Year Right 1
Suggested time: 10 minutes
1. Greet Students at the Door. Distribute a copy of
Student Handout B1: Buddy Clock to each student as
they enter the room.
2. Explain the reason for the Buddy Clock Activity.
Tell the students that from time to time, they will be
doing activities in class that require pairs to work
together. Completing this Buddy Clock activity will
allow the students to move quickly into pairs and
allow them the opportunity to work with different
people throughout the year.
Student Handout B1
3. Go over the rules for the Buddy Clock activity. Buddy Clock
Instruct the students to read the directions quietly
while you read them aloud.
• Using a projected Buddy Clock, digital, doc-cam, or
transparency, walk the students through each of the
three scenarios at the bottom of their handout.
4. Give students 5 minutes to get as many signatures
as possible. Consider ringing a bell or announcing to
the class any time a student completes their clock and
brings it to you.
5. At the end of time, have all the students who still
have an opening for an hour to come to the middle of
the room. Pair these students quickly by finding out
what hours people have open, and if students have not
signed previously, signing them up. For those that
remain, use your professional judgement to allow Alternate to
pairs to work a second hour together or to have a Clock Suggestion
group of three in some circumstances. (note: if you
Instead of a clock,
have absent students, either fill one in for them consider a map with
yourself or have another student fill one in for them.) selected locations for
students to sign. Instead
6. Model how the Buddy Clock is used. Ask students of calling them clock
to review their clock. Have them point, from their buddies, they would be
seats, to their 7 o’clock buddy. Ask them to move
together and work together for the lesson. Explain
Basic Training: Starting the School Year Right 2
that for future lessons where students are to be
paired, you will use the buddy clock to pair them up
quickly. Over time, they will have the opportunity to
work with everyone in the class.
Social Studies Skill Builder
Suggested Time: 30 minutes
1. Explain the purpose of the activity. Tell the
students in the next activity, they will learn about the
interactive student notebook (or ISN) and how it will
be used in class and at home.
2. Create 12+ Manila Folders with copies of Placards Placards B1-B6
B1-B6. Pass out a folder to each pair of students to
use as they complete each step in the process.
3. Pass out Student Handout B2: Matrix for ISN.
Have the students look at each feature on their matrix.
Pairs are to complete each column in their matrix,
Student Handout B2:
including the last column which must be initialed by Matrix for ISN
4. Have pairs begin work on the first feature. Have
pairs begin with the first feature, ISN Setup, and
complete all three columns of their matrix. Remind
students that before moving onto a next feature in
sequence, they must check in with you and be signed
off. Pairs will repeat this process until they have Student Handout B3:
ISN Guidelines &
completed all six features on their matrix. Once pairs Expectations
complete the fifth feature, give each student in a pair
a copy of Student Handout B3: ISN Guidelines &
5. Debrief all six features quickly. Explain to the
students that it will be necessary to bring their
notebook to class every day unless they are told
Basic Training: Starting the School Year Right 3
Suggested Time: 10 minutes; complete for homework “Going Digital”
1. Challenge students to create an editorial cartoon.
Have students turn to page 4 of their interactive Have students use a web
tool that allows them to
student notebook. Tell them that you would like to create their cartoon and
challenge them to create an editorial cartoon. share it. One possibility
is www.toondoo.com .
2. The subject of the cartoon should be on the ISN.
Tell the students to use the interactive student
notebook as the subject of their cartoon. The cartoon
should include things that would explain features the
features and benefits of the notebook. “What if”
3. Challenge students to use appropriate materials.
What if you don’t want
Students can draw their cartoon and color it, or use your students to create
other means to create their cartoon. their own notebook using
a spiral? What if you
have a consumable
notebook instead? What
if you’d like your
students to include other
features not listed as part
of this activity? Teaching
is a private practice. This
way to set up the
notebook may differ from
what you like. Adjust
your matrix and materials
as needed. It is also
suggested to review the
Social Studies Alive (for
elementary) or Bring
Learning Alive (for
books as a whole section
in both is devoted to
various configurations of
the interactive student
Basic Training: Starting the School Year Right 4
Student Handout B1: Buddy Clock
Directions: When your teacher
asks you to, circulate the room
and get a different student to
PRINT their first, last name by
each hour on the clock. Here
are a five rules to complete this
Print Your 1. Print your name in the middle of
Name Here 2.
your clock on the line provided.
You may only get another
students name on your clock
3. When asking someone to sign a
particular hour on your clock,
you BOTH have to blanks by that
4. If you are having trouble finding
someone that has an opening for
a particular hour on the clock,
ask aloud, “Does anyone have an
opening for __ o’clock?”
5. Take your completed clock to
your teacher when all twelve
hours are filled.
Can you also
Want to be I’m open at 10
sign my 6
my 2 o’clock I’ve already Are we o’clock, are
o’clock Let me look.
appointment? got someone allowed to you?
appointment? No one has
there, can we sign more
signed my 10.
do that? than once?
NO NO YES!
Student Handout B2: ISN Matrix
Notebook Feature Two words to Why is this feature To Do List for You
describe feature important?
Create a Table of Contents
Notebook Setup inside the front cover like the
Number the TOC page 1
Create a bag with a glue
Materials Used stick, pack of colored pencils,
and a pair of scissors from the
Cut out the Buddy Clock
Previews Glue it onto page 2
Add the title to your TOC
Fold this matrix in half
Reading Notes Glue it onto page 3
Add the title to your TOC.
On page 4 of the ISN, create
Process Pages a large rectangle on the top
half of the page.
Add the title, “Cartoon
About ISN” at the top and TOC.
Glue the “Notebook
Notebook Expectations and Guidelines”
Assessments to the inside‐back cover of the
Student Handout B3: ISN Guidelines & Expectations
INTERACTIVE STUDENT NOTEBOOK GUIDELINES
What is the purpose of the notebook?
The purpose of the interactive notebook is to enable the student to be a creative, independent thinker and writer. Interactive
notebooks will be used for class notes as well as other activities where students will be asked to express their own ideas and
process the information presented by this class.
What materials will the student need?
Spiral bound, College bound preferable
70 sheets to 100
11 x 8 ½ in.
Three holed punched
*Blue or Black Pens, Pencil, Colored Pencils or Crayons
How should the notebook be organized?
Students will get detailed instructions in class the first week of school, but what follows is the basic premise. The notebook
will be organized into a left side and a right side.
What goes on the Right Side of the Interactive Student Notebook?
The right side of the ISN is for class and reading notes. As students take notes, they will structure them so that key ideas are
clear and supported by examples from class instruction, discussions, or reading assignments.
What goes on the Left Side of the Interactive Student Notebook?
The left side of the ISN will be used for a variety of different activities, including homework. This side should be the place
where all of the creative and artistic inklings come busting out! Left side activities will ask the student to demonstrate
understanding of new ideas. The kinds of new activities for the left side are listed as follows:
“PREVIEW”: is an activity where the student will be asked to preview new material that will tie into the content of the
lesson. This activity relies on students’ prior knowledge and is meant to be something that EVERY student can answer.
“PROCESS”: an activity in which the student will be asked to present new ideas they learned from the lesson in a way that is
meaningful. For example, a student my show their understanding of new ideas by writing a poem or a story, drawing pictures,
making diagrams, drawing political cartoons, or writing a eulogy.
How will it be possible to earn an “A” on the Interactive Student Notebook?
A student who expects to receive an A- or higher grade on their notebook will be one who has taken the time to consistently
include thorough, neat, accurate, and colorful work.
How will the Interactive Student Notebook be graded?
Notebooks will be checked quarterly for neatness, accuracy, and completeness. All class notes and notebook assignments
should be included, even for days in which the student is absent. Students are personally responsible to check the MASTER
ISN I keep or MYSELF for work. Students can expect to have their notebooks checked twice first quarter and once a quarter
Where will the ISN be kept?
For the most part, the ISN will never leave the classroom. Only on days where there is an extended Process activity for
homework. A box to hold ISN’s for each period of American History will be left in the classroom.
What happens when the 70 page notebook runs out of paper?
Students will use one notebook per quarter. This eliminates the cumulative damage from day to day use over time.
Placard B1: Notebook Setup
Setting up the Interactive Notebook is extremely important. It’s also important to be
consistent. Notice that the Table of Contents allows the student to find their place
quickly. What other features in the set up of these notebooks allow students to find
and know what is on the pages?
Placard B2: Notebook Materials
The materials used to maintain the Interactive Student Notebook are critical. Look
at the following pages. What did the student use to create a good looking notebook?
Some of the pages look like handouts. What tools will be needed to get handouts
inside the notebook?
Placard B3: Notebook Previews
The first part of every lesson will begin with a preview. This part of the lesson is
usually 5 to 10 minutes. Sometimes students recall previous information.
Sometimes students share a thought on a possible scenario. When you hear the
word “preview,” what role do you think this plays in the lesson? Why would it be an
important part of the notebook?
Placard B4: Reading Notes
When the class moves into learning new content from an activity, textbook, lecture,
or other source of information, students take their notes around graphic organizers.
Note how both words and images are used to help the student to remember the key
information. Remember that this portion of the notebook is testable.
Placard B5: Notebook Processing
The class will engage in processing assignments at the end of each lesson. This is
the students opportunity to show what they know. Look at these examples of
process assignments, what are some characteristics? Would a student just be able
to memorize facts and complete these assignments? Why will these assignments
make you a better tester?
Placard B6: Notebook Assessment
From time to time, notebooks will be collected and assessed. The expectations and
guidelines for keeping your notebook will help you to be ready for these
assessments. While every page in your notebook may not be reviewed, all are fair