(under construction 1.12.15)
For my science classes, we keep a prompt notebook. Prompts are 5-10 minute assignments that students complete at home and we discuss at the start of the next class. It is a variety on the ‘do-now’ or ‘science starter’ activity many teachers use to start their classes. What I like about having the students work on the prompts as homework is that they have more time to really think about the question and respond without being rushed. They come into class ready to discuss the prompts. I like to use a marble composition notebook as their prompt notebook.
One of my goals is to increase visual literacy skills in addition to verbal literacy. Visual literacy include the skills needed to interpret photographs or drawings, extrapolating data from charts and data tables, watching a video and making observations, understanding and creating various types of diagrams, and being able to interpret and use symbols.
Our school uses Haiku as our Learning Management System (LMS). On Haiku, I post the weekly homework as well as reference materials, such as ppts, docs, & spreadsheets, via Google Drive. I have a tab on my homepage where I post the prompts so students can access the questions, videos, diagrams, and links they need to answer the prompts.
For grading, I spot check the prompts for completion and stamp each entry. Students are expected to make corrections as needed when we discuss the prompts. Every so often I collect their prompt notebooks to grade an entry. I also have open-notes prompt notebook quizzes where I post questions from their notebook. If they have completed all of their prompts and made corrections, they should earn a grade they are happy with. A low grade tells me they are not making corrections or haven’t made up missing prompts.
“Every night, you will have a science prompt that will either be a review of what we learned in class, or a preview of what we will learn in class the next day. You are to copy the question into your notebook, and answer it in complete sentences and/or using diagrams if needed.
Because we go over the answers in class each day, LATE prompts will not be accepted. It is your responsibility to bring all of your work to class each day. If you are absent, ABS will be recorded in my grade book, see me at academic support to earn full points when you return.”
- 6 – Proper Heading with date and prompt #, Question written in notebook, diagram(s) present, answered with excellent effort
- 4 – One of the above is missing, but answer is present and good effort
- 2 – Two or more of the above are missing, but answer is present and some effort
- 0 – Incomplete OR prompt book was not in class when we went over the answers