Based on my experience, one fully used multi-purpose journal is better than many journals that contain many empty pages. 6. Quick writes? They make you realize why you became a teacher. In a classroom, the most obvious use for journals is as a writing strategy, but that is not all. Contact me at: . Will students share the journals with others? Many EFL writing teachers have heard students complain about ‘not being able to start’ or ‘not having much to say’ when given a piece of paper and a topic. By having your students maintain math journals throughout the school year, you and the parents of your students will be able to take a quick glance to see how the children have progressed with the acquisition of a variety of different math skills over time. •  Pattern Based Writing: Quick & Easy Essay, Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress. Do students share what they wrote with at least one other student? When teachers introduce the idea of journaling into their classroom, they're often searching for reflective journal writing tips for students. How will I implement my journal system? This applies to journal writing and using your classroom time wisely. Is it a timed writing? By using a math journal as a “math scrapbook” a child can have a fun and engaging time learning mathematics. I always remind my students about how fun this will be to read when they are adults or grandparents. By planning out what you hope to accomplish and by making a variety of strategic choices, you will maximize the benefits for your students and reduce the headaches and heartaches for everyone. How do you communicate your expectations? How will you monitor the journals? With whom will they share? Math problems can concern a variety of different topics, and as math journals are a highly visual medium – usually including illustrations, charts and graphs – you can cover a lot of ground in a math journal prompt. Daily? If you are, then you will definitely want to read what follows. 4. With so much to accomplish and so little time, are journals an effective use of time? Will the journals help you achieve your grade level writing standards? There is no absolute right way to use journals in the elementary or middle school classroom, but there are many wrong ways. •  Journals can be used as a source of ideas and prewriting for other writing assignments. Journal about problems you’re having in your personal life, business or elsewhere. Where will the journal writing time come from? How many different journals are you going to use? How do you handle spelling and grammar issues? Kindergarten teachers may have to write some of their entries but it is still great for the students to see that their thoughts can be put down in writing. How will the teacher interact with the students’ journals? You can even use journaling to work on messy first drafts before turning them into Medium posts later on. These are the ideas that will help students become motivated to formulate opinions, express themselves openly, and write reflectively. If the teacher doesn’t read the journals, could the students’ time be better spent doing something else? Some teachers successfully use journals as an important tool in their teaching methodology. Content area learning goals? Or will you use another method for monitoring journals? Will the journals be primarily prompted writing or unprompted writing? If the teacher treats the journals as the treasures that they are, the students will also. Do you treat the journal writing as a regular classroom writing assignment? 19. Does everyone get to finish every journal entry? A math journal is a workbook that a primary or elementary school student maintains to document his or her progress in mathematics throughout the school year. What sounds great but will likely prove unrealistic or ineffective? Even if you often provide handouts for your students to work on, if they paste them into their math journals to complete and save, this is one way that you can “tie your lessons together”. Take out a piece of paper and make a plan. Math journals can contain solved math problems, writings, or illustrations to represent a variety of different mathematics skills acquired and applied during the course of a semester or academic year. 12. •  Journal writing can be hard to align with achieving state writing standards and CCSS. You will be thrilled that you did! (these entries often surprises me). Why will students journal? 6 benefits of journal writing for elementary students, plus some ideas for making writing lists to spark kids imaginations. Writing about yo u r inner life is a useful practice for getting ideas out of your head and onto the blank page. 10. Students can see how they have progressed through the year from their first entries to their last. •  Journal writing is often perceived as busy work. 8. Here are five reasons why: Sometimes, the transition between subjects in an elementary school classroom can be difficult. Think about the difference of writing an entry in your own journal that is yours to keep at the end of the year and compare that with handing in a piece of paper with the same assignment. What are my goals and expectations? And of course, as students are reading their math journal prompts and writing answers in their journals, they are employing their skills in English and language arts as well. Is the journal’s main goal to improve and explore writing or to reflect on learning? This information will help you discuss your students’ progress during parent/teacher conferences, and can also provide a level of pride for the students themselves when they are able to flip through their math journals and see all the hard work that they were able to complete in the classroom and as homework throughout the year. 16. Once again, this page is designed to help you help yourself. Either way, while you are getting ready to present your main lesson, your students can be working diligently in their math journals. Math journals can make for handy and effective classroom resources. How will the journals be graded? What you are likely to follow through on? Be sure to download my new free eBook: The Multi-Purpose Journal and Learning Log: How to Use Ten Types of Writing in one Journal and Learning Log to Teach Content and Writing Across the Curriculum. Will it be reflective writing or personal writing? At Christmastime, it’s a lot more fun to figure out how many presents Santa Claus left Johnny and Suzy under the Christmas tree than it is to figure out how many peanuts Eddie ate at the baseball game. Classroom Behavior; Technology. •  Journals deliver academic results mostly for teachers who really understand how journal writing fits in with their curriculum, their academic goals, and their teaching style. (this is fun to give elementary school students also), If I could make one change in the world it would be…. We personally like to apply the concept of Mathbooking – a creative outlet that mixes the analytical problem solving skills of mathematics with the creative fun of scrapbooking. Checklists? Will the journals be graded? Let’s make a plan! Using math journals in the classroom can help you to eliminate the stress involved with making a transition from subject to subject. 18. I began a project that places journal writing at the center of my Course II class. Is there a special journal writing time? Journal writing usage and effectiveness can vary from grade to grade and from teacher to teacher. But making that decision during writing will benefit your speaking. 21. Copies passed out? In their journal? •  Many journals are abandoned when they don’t seem to be going anywhere or delivering any results. What is your most valuable possession? The main issue with journals is time. 24. You can prepare for a math lesson by having introductory math journal prompts already printed and cut out, ready to distribute to your students at the start of the period, or you can write an interesting activity on the board that your students should start to complete in their math journals to kick off the lesson. A couple times a day? Research has shown that encouraging students to maintain journals can be beneficial as it can: Do you schedule a different type of writing or entry on different days of the week? Journaling turbo-charges curiosity. Practice makes perfect, and if students practice writing incorrectly, they will get perfect at writing incorrectly. •  Journals can help build a community of writers. 17. Have students work in groups to present to their classmates. Benefits of Journaling in the Classroom Journaling is a reflective process that enables writers to take control of their thoughts and emotions. As you may have guessed, the benefits of journaling naturally extend to more general stress management as well as anxiety. Nonetheless, the subvocalization of tracing your written thoughts naturally translates in actual vocalization. Is the journal connected to any other writing curriculum? Journals provide many advantages in the classroom: How different would your entry be if you had one of the following assignments, knowing you may read this many years from now? 3. Some students end up providing “a bit too much information.” What is your policy? Kids will get very personal in journals. Have you looked at Pattern Based Writing: Quick & Easy Essay yet. Free writes? How? Journal writing is cathartic, and often a student will write about something he or she would never say. Students are much more invested in writing their thoughts, interests, hopes and beliefs, in an area that is all theirs. As such, let’s examine a few pros and cons of journal writing in the elementary and middle school classroom. You learn about your students through their journal entries. 14. Helps Some Students to Deal with Issues By paying attention to what is written in a journal, teachers can be more aware of what is really happening outside of school to our students. Math journal prompts are a great way to integrate science, social studies and other subjects with mathematics.