Q & A: For What Subjects is Notebooking Most Beneficial?

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What Subjects is Notebooking Best For?

Today’s question and answer post is based on a question from a reader. She asks which subjects notebooking is most beneficial for.

That’s a great question because it means that mom is thinking strategically about how notebooking is going to help her homeschooled child learn.

Learning is the purpose for notebooking. If you find that notebooking does not help your child learn, then you should change the way you do it or stop using it altogether. Before you give up on notebooking, though, try reading my eBook guide Notebooking Success. It can help you implement notebooking for maximum benefit.

My answer is in the vlog below as well as in the post.

Q: For what subjects is notebooking most beneficial?

A: Notebooking can work with any subject, but it is most beneficial for the subjects in which complex material can be presented in easy to understand ways.

In general, notebooking is used at the end of a lesson to narrate back what was learned. Different ways of presenting that material can be used, but written summaries are probably the most common.

To supplement the written recap, a student can add additional elements such as postcards, maps, sketches, and so on. (Here is a list of 50 different things for a notebook.)

So if notebooking is used to narrate or tell back, it is going to work best for a subject that is rather complex but that the child can successfully explain through words or visuals. The act of breaking the lesson down into its more important parts and then explaining them clearly is very beneficial for a child. It cements the learning and increases retention of the information.

It’s also helpful for you, homeschool mom, because you now know that your child does have a firm grasp of the material covered in the lesson.

So what subjects fit that description? History and science immediately come to mind. They are full of complex stories and concepts that can be outlined and diagrammed in simpler ways on notebooking pages.

Instead of looking at this question from the perspective of academic subjects, it may be best to look at this question in terms of weekly scheduling. If you are assigning two notebooking projects for the week, which of your weekly topics have the most complex concepts? Those are probably the ones you should use for notebooking if you want the biggest academic benefit.

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Jimmie Quick

Jimmie is now a veteran homeschool mom. Her daughter Emma is a student of the sciences at a large university in Illinois. Her guide to notebooking—Notebooking Success—guides you through notebooking: what it is; how to use it; how it fits a Charlotte Mason, classical, and textbook curriculum; tips for getting the most educational value from it; and much more. It comes bundled with several bonuses, including a small set of generic notebooking pages that can be used with any topic.

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ChristyH Reply

I like notebooking mostly for history. Our science has some notebooking pages already, so history it is. ;0)

Jasmine Reply

Thanks for this! It helps me in my own planning.

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