Sunday, August 30, 2015

Note Taking, Summarizing and Timelines

Excellence in Education : Note Taking and Summarization
Within the last week, I’ve witnessed tons of research-proven note taking strategies from Cornell Notes to Guided Notes to Summarization to Guided Notes. As we prepare our students for academic success and college, note taking and summarizing are vital skills for our students to master and the aforementioned strategies teach students that simply listening and taking notes during class isn’t nearly as effective.

Some of the research-supported instructional strategies, I observed included:  

  • Modeling and providing students with samples (especially important at the beginning of the year)
  • Allowing students to personalize their notes (the smaller column in the Cornell notes, interacting with guided notes)
  • Using graphic organizers during and/or after note taking (in the classes I observed, these were provided to the students, but I imagine as students become more familiar and grow their expertise, you can provide them with choices and eventually students can/should create their own graphic organizers)
  • Quick summarization strategies (complete a summary within a defined space--so important to limit students so that they only “pull out” the most important information and giving students the opportunity to work in pairs to summarize)

I applaud all of you for teaching the proper skills of summarizing and note taking! By teaching these skills, students leave your class with a stronger foundation for learning in your class and all of their  classes.

Idea for Education : HSTRY Timelines
Well for most of my educational career, I was a history teacher so I’m always on the lookout for great history sources and this is one of my favorites. HSTRY is a free timeline maker so in addition to the obvious uses in history classes, it has other uses as well. It could be used by students to introduce themselves to their classmates (saw several different approaches to this the first week), in English class it could be used for plot summarization, in science class it could be used to describe various cycles, or in any class it could be part of a research project. From a teacher-perspective, it could be used to flip instruction, for review, and for enhancement.

Things I love about
  • Questions or quizzes can be embedded into the timeline as checks for understanding
  • As a teacher you can create a classroom and share the code with your students, so that you can easily find all their timelines and they can find yours
  • Students can comment on timelines from their class (and you have the ability to edit/delete these)
  • It’s easy to upload pictures from your computer or the web
  • You can add audio or video (YouTube) easily
  • It seems to work on most internet devices
  • Timelines automatically save
  • Intuitive and easy to use but they also have plenty of explanatory youtube videos

Weekly Shout Out
Great job by Mr. Trent for organizing the College Culture and Pride Day on Friday.

Thanks to Ms. Weaver for organizing our Mustang Mornings and getting the labels to us and to all the teachers who “drafted” students to ensure they reach their potential.

Need To Knows
Mustang Morning begins Monday, August 31.

Calendar Items
Tuesday, September 1: Fire Drill (1st Period)

September 4: Pep Rally

1 A
1 B
Mustang Morning
2nd Period
  1st Lunch: 10:54-11:24
  2nd Lunch: 11:30-12:00
  3rd Lunch: 12:09-12:39
2 A
2 B
3 A
3 B
4 A
4 B
Pep Rally

September 9: Back to School Night (6:30-8)
          Senior (retakes) and Transfers Math, Science SOL Testing

September 10: First Senior/Long Lunch
Senior (retakes) and Transfers Reading SOL Testing

September 14: US DOE CTE Visit

September 15: Senior and Transfers History SOL Testing

September 16-18: Senior and Transfer Make-up SOL Testing

September 17: Faculty meeting (afternoon only)

Worth Your Time

Some Note-Taking and Summarizing Resources