Tried It Tuesday: Reading Notebooks - Ideas By Jivey: For the Classroom

Tried It Tuesday: Reading Notebooks

Hi friends!! I am so excited to link up with my girl Holly for another Tried It Tuesday!
This week, I wanted to share a lesson with you that I'm doing for the first time in THIS way. It's with the book, Knots on a Counting Rope, which I absolutely adore and read to my class every year.
It's a REALLY great book to use to teach inferring- the boy is blind, but there are only "clues" given along the way that he is... it's also filled with figurative language. How I haven't created a for-real unit for this yet, I don't know! (Sounds like a TPT product in the works, huh?)

So this year, after buying Nicole Shelby's 4th Grade Reading Interactive Notebook, I am using her pieces to start off my mini-lessons.
And I love her ideas...... but let me just say, this year, I am STRUGGLING with keeping my kids on track during cutting and gluing time. I am using interactive notes in all my subjects this year.... and I have NEVER had this problem before, but y'all, it takes 30 minutes sometimes just to get this daggum stuff cut out!

I'm dying.

Anyway, back to the lesson. So, today, we read the first half of Knots on a Counting Rope after we talked about what makes an inference= text + schema using Nicole's awesome visuals. Then we created a chart on the left to track what the text says, and what our schema says. Of course, all of this is being modeled right now as I read the book, but they seem to be getting it and doing a great job of keeping up in their notebook! (Now if we can just work on the cutting and gluing. I digress.)
I know it's hard to see in this picture, so let me tell you what she has in her notes:

Text: The boy knows the story by heart.
Schema: He heard the story a lot.

Text: The wind was whipping up sand and crying.
Schema: When the wind blows hard, there is usually a storm.

Text: The boy was born with a dark curtain over his eyes.
Schema: A curtain over your eyes keeps you from seeing.

We practiced just saying what the text says, what we know, and then making our inference today using the prompt on the right side of the page. Tomorrow, I will have them make a new chart with three columns to show what the text says, what they think, and then their inference, so they can practice writing it.

Sooooooo... I shared with you two Fridays ago how I had been nominated to be in the running for Teacher of the Year at my school. There was a pretty lengthy application, and quite a few candidates, so I was honestly just honored to even be nominated. WELLLLLLL today, I found out I'm one of the three finalists!! :o)
I am so excited to have even made it this far! Honestly, the other finalists are outstanding, and I feel honored to even be considered in the same category as them! It is super exciting though, and I have had a cheesy grin on my face all afternoon! I've said it before, and I'll say it again- the blogging community makes me strive to be a better teacher every day! :o) Thank you all so much for following, reading, commenting, and supporting me, and of course, to my fellow bloggy friends, thank you for sharing all your great ideas because I definitely borrow and steal from you! I cannot take all of the credit, for sure. My teammates and my bloggy friends totally rock! :o)

Hope to see you tomorrow linking up to Workshop Wednesday! I know LOTS of you have started back to school now and we want to hear how you set up Workshops with your class! :o)


  1. Your notebook looks great! Thanks for the wonderful idea and book recommendation. You aren't the only one with cutting and gluing woes!!! Oh my....hand out scissors and glue to my bunch and our world turns upside down. It's worrying me because I cut and glue all the time!! Hopefully they will get better! Congrats on the nomination!
    Polka Dot Lesson Plans

  2. Congrats! You are AWESOME and I am sure you will be the Teacher of the Year! I too purchased this notebook and can't wait to use it. I plan to start it this week. Thanks for sharing!

    I {Heart} Recess

  3. First of all, congratulations on making it to the final three for TOY! It is easy to see why you were recognized this award without even having met you. :)

    Second, I also bought Nicole's Reading Notebook at TpT and am looking forward to using it. I appreciate your insights but it worries me that the kids are taking soooo long to cut everything out. I had a bunch like that last year. Hope it's not something in the water...

    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

  4. Congratulations on making it this far. I bet you win! :)

    Eclectic Educating

  5. Congratulations on being selected as a finalist - I may not have seen you teach but going on the ideas you share and resources you create I know you are amazing. I have this book on my desk - I was going around collecting books for someone's Mentor Sentence units :). I bought the Grade 3 edition of the same resource - so thanks for the great idea :)

  6. Congrats! I'm looking forward to reading this later in the year with the kids and then doing the mentor sentence lessons that go with it.

    I read First Day Jitters to the kids today (our first day back!) and then introduced the concept of the Mentor Sentences Notebook to the kids and we did our first lesson...while I was teaching I kept thinking, "This makes so much sense, why didn't I use these last year?!" Thanks for all your work on the units!

    The only problem is that since I teach multi-age I loop with my kids, and I'll have used all 3 units with these kids in one I'm gonna need you to get to work on a few more units. ;)

    Sweet Rhyme – Pure Reason
    Follow my blog with Bloglovin

  7. Congratulations!!!! Such an honor and you should be smiling! :O) I, too, have had some issues with the cutting, gluing, taping in the notebooks! Maybe we should have a linky to share tips! LOL! I told my students this week the pace would quicken, so they'd have to step up! We shall see... Love your inferencing lesson!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching

    1. CONGRATS on your Teacher of the Year nomination. I'm replying under Joanne's comment because....y'all, I have found the GOLDEN ticket to light a fire under everyone today. It only took me 16 years to figure it out. My kids were moving in turtle mode today and all of a sudden I just randomly blurted out, "The first person that does this without talking, does it well, and does it quickly will earn no homework tonight". You would have thought there was a real fire in the building. I've never seen the kids move so fast and get completed what I needed to get completed AND they did a phenomenal job with it. I was shocked! It worked better than candy. I wonder if you could try that for one day with the cutting. Joanne has the really cool coupons too to go with it! I'm sure this wouldn't work all the time, but it's worth a shot. Tomorrow I might try "no homework for TWO DAYS!". Lol
      Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  8. I am also using interactive notebooks and feel the same way!! We definitely all need to share tips :) haha! I LOVE how they turn out, though! Great inferencing lesson. Definitely getting this book :)


  9. Wow!! I am SO happy for you and being a finalist for teacher of the year!! It sounds like such a huge deal in your district with the application and!! No matter what happens, I know what an amazing teacher you are by everything you share here. I feel so lucky to have you for a friend in the bloggy world!

    I also purchased Nicole's product during the sale too and the time to cut out and glue worries me a little. I'm sure it will be a source of frustration soon but I love the finished product!! That book looks amazing and I think you should work on that TPT product (hint, hint;).
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  10. Hmmmm, after reading your post, reading these comments, and checking out this Nicole Shelby reading journal packet, I'm thinking I need this thing. The pics you showed of your interactive journal really hit home with me. I'm totally loving the idea of having the kids have this stuff in a reading journal. I have my own way of doing my reading packets, but this is super duper and will only enhance the student learning. Thnak you so much for sharing this gem of an idea. The only caveat is that I need to buy one for 3rd AND 4th grade. And, my district is implementing CCSS until next year {but I don't think that'll be an issue}.

    Teaching Powered by Caffeine

  11. Okay, so I wanted to read this book to my students, but the library didn't have it. There is a video on youtube though where Mr. Feeney from Boy Meets World reads it!! (None of my students have seen that show! How sad!) So we watched the video together and I paused it throughout and we talked about schema and inferences. Thanks for the great idea!!!
    Also, my children are horrible with the cutting & gluing as well. Takes foreverrrrr. :/
    Congrats on making the final 3!


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