What is notebooking?
Creating and compiling a personalized notebook of learning experiences, new knowledge, insights, sketches, illustrations, creative writing, reflections, and more! This is like a scrapbook of things learned.
The notebook takes on the personality of its author – the student – as she decides what content to include, how to present it, how to organize it, and how to shape what she’s learned.
The notebook captures the journey of a child’s learning. Notebooks not only record new knowledge, but also reflect deepening understanding of the world, developing a writing voice, and exploring creative talents.
2 components to notebooking…
This can include narration, facts, copywork, poetry, vocabulary, essay, creative writing, thoughts and opinions.
This can include drawing, maps, timelines, clipart, images, coloring pages, photographs, borders, stickers. They can be as fancy or plain as you like.
Notebooking is not…
It’s not busywork. It’s not like fill-in-the-blank worksheets. It’s not a diary. It’s not inflexible. It’s not cookie-cutter. It’s not just for a certain type of learner. It’s not just for a certain age. There are no limitations.
Why we love notebooking:
- critical thinking skills
- research skills
- pre-writing skills
- strengthens comprehension and retention.
Notebooking and narrations can be used with or without formal curriculum and it is not limited to any particular homeschool or educational method.
My kids exceed my expectations with their notebooking pages all the time.
Sometimes, they want to do copywork or narration.
Sometimes they want to get really creative.
Sometimes, they feel colorful and other times, they just want to jot down the facts.
How we use notebooking in all our school subjects:
I often print all the relevant notebooking pages for a unit of history before we begin study. The kids fill them in as we read or afterwards, summarizing what they learned.
We love copywork and art with Draw Write Now. We practice with dry erase boards and then complete the writing and drawing in our workbooks. We keep art journals and portfolios. I even frame some of the really great ones.
We love learning the Bible with notebooking. We write Scripture, do stick figures with Grapevine Studies, complete notebooking journals with Apologia.
We love notebooking about science and nature study. We learned about grasshoppers. We learned about our backyard pond. We went on a winter nature walk and notebooked about what we saw. We also love the Apologia science notebooking journals.
We notebook with Life of Fred math. We also do a lot of hands-on math and notebooking.
Of course, we notebook with literature. See how we use notebooking with language arts. My teen keeps reader notebooks as she reads.
As my kids get older, they love notebooking online or with technology. The Notebooking Publisher App is great for creating notebooking pages – especially handy when we can’t find ready-made ones for special topics.
Our Favorite Tools for Notebooking:
We start with super simple and frugal:
As the kids get older – more creative and independent, we add other elements:
- Stickers and scrapbooking supplies
- Good Prismacolor
- Blank journals
For personalized notebooks (great for unit studies!):
I use these for unit studies, copywork books, Bible notebooks, and more.
What a wonderful idea! I think Monkey Boy would particularly like this idea as a project to do daily (or near daily), as he sees that I do something similar! :)
Sharon Fleming says
I’m your neighbor on A Bountiful Life. I love notebooks and always feel like I haven’t truly thought something until I’ve written it down!
Michelle Knight says
We love note booking too! Thanks for all of the information and references. They will be used in our homeschool this year. See you next week at Talk It Up Thursday!
Michele Morin says
I will love notebooks to my dying day — and I still have some of the boys’ earliest nature notebooks with their drawings and copy work about the beauty of creation!
Janet Trieschman says
I love the idea of notebooking, journaling, planning; I just have never really had it settle in with me. I am left handed and have always struggled with the binding being in the wrong place. Thanks for sharing with us at Creatively Crafty Link Party #CCBG http://tryit-likeit.com/link-party-it
Elaine Matthews says
This is right up my daughters isle!! She has tons of notebooks from back to middle school…part planner…part ideas…and wish list…she has one going now with wedding plans! Thanks for sharing on My 2 Favorite Things on Thursday – Pinned!
I fell in love with notebooking when I first heard about it. Sadly for me, it was a no go for my son. He loathed anything and everything about it. I was almost in tears for several months trying to get him to enjoy it. I finally gave up on my hopes of him one day loving a learning experience I wanted for him. We still have a year and a half before high school graduation, maybe there is still a little hope for me. :) Thanks for sharing with Thankful Thursdays.
Erin Vincent says
This is such a great idea!!! We have a nature journal and we keep a notebook for Life of Fred….perhaps I need to add more notebooks? And the notebook membership pages…I’ve seen many homeschoolers rave about those!
Great post and inspiring! We love the note booking approach too! Thank you for sharing with us on the Art of Home-Making Mondays at Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth! :)