Education Opinion

“The Notebook Method”

By LeaderTalk Contributor — April 05, 2009 1 min read

This is not going to be the usual philosophical vision, mission, goals, kind of post. I am going to share a tool that I started using this year called “The Notebook Method.” I am pretty tech savvy but there are some things that are just better with paper and pencil. Yes, I have tried every organizational tool/recording method there is and I am pretty happy with this one.
(Please excuse my image layout as this is my first post with the edweek version.)

Get a 5 subject notebook. (I work in a K-4 building so there is a section for each grade level.)

Tab each section with some kind of a tab for each grade level.

You are going to work your way forwards and backwards through the notebook.

In the front of each section you are going to record your notes from grade level meetings with your teachers. Every time you meet with a grade level you document what is discussed. (You can also hand your notebook of to one of the teachers and have them document too to give them ownership.)

At the back of each section, working your way backwards, you are going to keep student notes. Any time a teacher comes to me about a student I record the discussion in the back of the section of that grade level. If I have a parent conference or parent phone call, I record it in the back section of the notebook.

*I do not record discipline because it is kept in the computer for core data. If there are discipline issues I usually have something about that student in “the notebook” anyway.

*Just for fun I ordered some notebooks from Shutterfly. I showed my counselor “The Notebook Method” and she thought I was a genius.(Okay, I am the boss she acted like I was a genius.) Then she tried to one-up me so I had to order some custom notebooks. We call it the “notebook wars.” Both of us are scrapbookers.

Melinda Miller
The Principal Blog

The opinions expressed in LeaderTalk are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

Let us know what you think!

We’re looking for feedback on our new site to make sure we continue to provide you the best experience.


This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Future of Work Webinar
Digital Literacy Strategies to Promote Equity
Our new world has only increased our students’ dependence on technology. This makes digital literacy no longer a “nice to have” but a “need to have.” How do we ensure that every student can navigate
Content provided by Learning.com
Mathematics Online Summit Teaching Math in a Pandemic
Attend this online summit to ask questions about how COVID-19 has affected achievement, instruction, assessment, and engagement in math.
School & District Management Webinar Examining the Evidence: Catching Kids Up at a Distance
As districts, schools, and families navigate a new normal following the abrupt end of in-person schooling this spring, students’ learning opportunities vary enormously across the nation. Access to devices and broadband internet and a secure

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Speech Therapists
Lancaster, PA, US
Lancaster Lebanon IU 13
Elementary Teacher
Madison, Wisconsin
One City Schools
Elementary Teacher - Scholars Academy
Madison, Wisconsin
One City Schools

Read Next

Education Obituary In Memory of Michele Molnar, EdWeek Market Brief Writer and Editor
EdWeek Market Brief Associate Editor Michele Molnar, who was instrumental in launching the publication, succumbed to cancer.
5 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: December 9, 2020
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of articles from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of stories from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read