At my school, the grade I teach is the first year kids are really moving from class to class and need to carry a big binder with them. It's been a huge issue for some students, others just get it. Teachers will need to spend some time helping to keep their students organized. Here are some of my ideas:
-- Get a Planner: kids need some way of taking on the personal responsibility of remembering their homework each night. While a planner (like an actual book) may get lost, perhaps a simple pring out of the classes a student has will be helpful--- 1 sheet per week. The homework sheet I designed is set up to include a space for student name, teacher name, will allow you to edit the subjects since it's a Word document, and even has a column for parents to sign off on the homework. I included the parent signature for those students who are having MAJOR issues with getting it in-- now Mom or Dad has to see it each evening. Click here to download: Homework Checklist.doc
What I totally love about this experiment is that almost any age group can do it! And what makes it so much fun for kids is that they get to play with candy. I became an instant hit with my classes for letting my kids play with candy during the first week of school!! The most exciting part was when the kids started figuring out how to do it~ they spent about 2 minutes complaining it would be too hard until I told them that it was totally possible to do!
This is not my idea though~ while student teaching, my 7th grade cooperating teacher showed me it. You can find the activity if you do a goole search as well, but I've drawn up my own handout for the kids to follow through. In their science notebooks, we then go step by step through setting up an experiment: Focus Question, Hypothesis/Prediction, Procedure, Data, Conclusion. I wish I had some examples of what it looks like from my kids, but sadly I don't. But below are the files which I used as handouts and data collection.
Click below on the files to download my versions of this activity!
Save Fred Activity Sheet: Save Fred Lab Miss Ks version.pdf
Science Notebook Layout: Save Fred Activity science notebook layout.pdf
Science Notebook~ 3 sketches for data: Save Fred drawing sheet.pdf