The Use of Interactive Student Notebooks in Teaching Social Studies at the Middle School Level
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The purpose of the research project was to evaluate the use of interactive notebooks in an eighth grade social studies class. The notebooks are an instructional tool which supports brain-based learning. The interactive notebooks allowed students to use their multiple intelligences and prior experiences, and to be able to shift note taking to an active process. They also allowed time for reflection and assistance with systematic organization. A study was conducted to determine whether the interactive notebooks would meet the needs of a diverse group of learners. This included the use of a survey which examined the difficulty of the assignments, how much the information and activities in the notebook helped students understand the content, and the advantages and disadvantages using this style of notebook. The results of the survey indicated that the students were challenged; the notebook information and activities were helpful in their retention of the material; and that organization, creativity and imagery were viewed as advantages for the students.
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