I have said it before. I love Science Notebooks. I have used every year I have taught science (that would be, count it, 2 whole years) and I am excited to use them again this year.
I want to do a lot more with the science notebook this year and have a lot more information in it. Sometimes it is like pulling teeth with 5th graders to get them to care about the science notebooks as much as I do, but it is worth it in the end.
This is an activity I am doing this week. One awesome part of G-camp was getting to talk to Jr. High and High School Science teachers. I asked them what they think us elementary teachers need to hit on better.
They mentioned science tools. Students don't really know how to use them or what they are. So I am going to try to be better at it this year.
So I have collected all the science tools that the Great State of Texas says my 5th graders need to know by the end of the year. The students will work in a groups and I will give them a few of the tools at a time. As they go through each tool, they will name it, draw a picture, and write a brief description of what it does.
Because they are working in groups, someone is bound to know at least what each tool does. But if by chance nobody knows, their instructions are to draw a picture and leave everything else blank.
Throughout the year as we use each tool in class, we will go back to these pages and fill in the blanks.
These are my example pages. I learned this format in a workshop I went to this summer. It is an easy way to give the students a limited space for each tool. Because you know some students will go crazy on the pages. They still might.