How to Setup An Interactive Journal

How to Setup An Interactive Journal


Hello fellow educators. Today, we’re focusing
on how to set up an interactive journal. What is interactive journaling? Interactive
journaling focuses on the process of a student’s output relative to the concept, objective
or information they are being taught. It is what students glean or gather from a lesson
and how they can implement, synthesize, or evaluate that information in their journals.
Many wonder how many journal entries should be done a week. I believe you should do however
many you feel comfortable with. Generally, speaking you could do an entry for every lesson
or just 1 to 2 a week. It’s all up to what works best for your class. For Pre-k and K
grade levels I wouldn’t recommend starting interactive journals until they can grip a
pencil and have the class routine down. Prekindergarten through 5th grade tend to
use composition notebooks while middle schools and high schools tend to use regular spiral
notebooks. However, this isn’t a rule. It’s just an observation. Let’s start with the actual set up. Choose
the style of journal or notebook you like. Today I’m using the composition style notebook.
The student’s name and subject go on the front. Many journals include the lines already so
you can write everything in but I like things more uniform so I’m using this template I
made which is part of my Interactive Journaling Ideas Book you can find on my products page
at Teacher’s Pay Teachers.com. Save anywhere from 4-6 pages to create a Table
of Contents. Label it: Table of Contents. For elementary students in pre-k or kindergarten
the rule of thumb is that when it comes to labeling and numbering their pages or table
of contents the teacher does it for them until they are able to number and label the pages
themselves. I also created a template for a table of contents so that teachers can type
in the titles of the objectives instead of writing 20+ by hand for pre-k and k. There are 2 types of pages in your journal
an input page and an output page. The input page is what the teacher gives the student.
This could be notes from a lecture, a graphic organizer done together as a class, or any
information given to the student by the teacher. Teacher input always goes on the right hand
side of all the journal pages. Many people remember this by remembering the phrase the
“teacher is always right”. Now for the output pages. Student output pages
should always be on the left hand side of every journal page. This is solely for the
student to use to solve, apply, synthesize, evaluate etc. For every lesson have students go into the
Table of Contents and write in the date, title and page number. Again, with little ones this
can become overwhelming since Pre-k and K teachers have to write this information in
for every student. This is why I have created a template for teachers in my Interactive
Journaling Ideas Book specifically for Pre-k and K. Let us remember that planning and thought
must go into your journal. I’m not disputing that sometimes good lessons can come in a
moment’s notice. However, interactive journaling works best when you know what you want your
students to create ahead of time on their output page. Here is what a journal entry would look like.
The table of contents reads 8-25-17 the title or objective is “Sorting by Color” Page number
2. Then we go to page 2 and see here that the
teacher had students take notes on the different colors that exist. The title is at the top.
Then we look at the students output page and see that the student sorted 3 different types
of items by color and illustrated and colored what they sorted. Of course, the teacher had
to teach them about colors and about sorting before they could ever do this simple journal
entry. The teacher also had to explain what she expected them to do which was sort items
by color independently. Lastly, the teacher communicated with students that they must
not only sort by color but also record what they did. As you can see Interactive journaling
is definitely a process! Interactive journals are great to use for
grades, to check for mastery of a concept, as a portfolio or to just chart progress.
It also looks great to set out on students’ desks for open house. Parents love to see
that sort of thing. Find more ideas for interactive journaling
for different grade levels complete with templates on my products page at Teachers Pay Teachers
under Natica Yi. Also, check out my other teacher help books called Acing Your Teacher
Evaluation and Before You Begin Teaching: Secret Gems of the Real Teaching World on
Amazon. Com. For more teacher information on other teacher topics or to set up an email
or phone consultation find me at NaticaYi.com If you enjoyed this video please like and
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