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The Reader's Notebook: An Overview

By Beth Newingham on November 15, 2012
  • Grades: 3–5

Once I did away with the basal many years ago and adopted the Reading Workshop approach in my classroom, I quickly realized that my students needed a place to organize their reading materials, keep track of the books they read, and record the thinking they do about their reading.

After trying out a variety of different versions of a Reader's Notebook, including a spiral notebook and a Duo-Tang folder, I finally determined that a binder was the most user-friendly solution.

A binder works so well for my readers because it provides them with an efficient way to add new handouts, quickly access information, and easily refer to previous reading responses in the six carefully organized sections of the binder. My Reader's Notebook is a one-inch view binder with a personalized cover and a spine labeled with each student's name. The binder has six sections that are separated with colored, labeled tabs.

I can't imagine running my Reading Workshop without having my students maintain a Reader's Notebook. It is in this notebook that students build their reading lives over the course of the year.

Comments (4)

This sounds great! What are the labels for 6 sections in your Reader's Notebook?

I was wondering the same, what are the tabs sectioned into?

Thank you! What are the labels for the 6 sections in you Reader's Notebook?

Thanks Beth - I also use the 3-ring binders as the best organizers for reader's notebooks.

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