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Notebook Connections: Strategies for the Reader's Notebook
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Notebook Connections: Strategies for the Reader's Notebook

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  369 ratings  ·  42 reviews
The question I grappled with was how to move students from “couch-potato” readers who can answer basic questions with one wordto readers who think while readingto readers who think beyond their reading.

–Aimee Buckner

In Notebook Know-How, Aimee Buckner demonstrated the power of notebooks to spark and capture students’ ideas in the writing workshop. In Notebook Connections
Paperback, 160 pages
Published April 28th 2009 by Stenhouse Publishers (first published March 28th 2009)
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Like Aimee Buckner, I have often been frustrated with the poor quality of my students' reading response entries. Aimee provides practical solutions for teaching students how to respond and provides rubrics, lesson plan ideas, and reflections to use with students.

I do not always agree with her approach, for example, I do not grade students' grammar, spelling, etc. when assessing response entries (perhaps I should). I will need to tweak some of her ideas to make them work with my philosophy about
This has been a wonderful "serious" read this summer. I worked on some of her strategies personally in my own "beginning" notebook, and it really opened my eyes to some of my own beliefs about reading.

She has constructed an interesting approach to specifically getting students to write about their comprehension/what their thinking about as they read.

Although written for older students, I am excited to dabble with some of these ideas with my younger students.

Where her first book Notebook Know-How centered on the writer’s notebook, Buckner shifts her attention to the reader’s notebook, and how reading like a writer, and writing about that heightens both student interest and learning. In essence, all the mini-lessons and strategies she outlines reinforce the old adage of reading like a writer, and even its inverse, writing like a reader.

Although I’m personally a huge fan of her philosophy and pedagogy – in an ideal classroom, that is – I am wary of t
I picked up this book for two reasons. One: I am doing interactive notebooks with my English 1 Support students and I thought it would give me good ideas. Two: it's about the "reader's notebook," which was something I wasn't familiar with.

All in all, I wasn't disappointed with the book. The writers give clear reasons for why they developed certain strategies, how to do it (including a mini-script, in some cases), and goals and procedures. Often, there are student examples, too. I haven't gotten
Lou Broughton
A quick read with practical extended response teaching ideas for the reader's notebook that will help intermediate teachers assess the level of understanding and frequency of use of comprehension strategies with their students. However, this book mostly focuses on fiction. Even though the author states in the beginning of the book that her suggestions extend to all genres, most do not extend to non-fiction.

I liked how the author referred to how her work with reader's notebooks pairs nicely with
I know this will get me tarred and feathered but I really think homeschooling parents should be required to take continuing education credits just like real teachers. I'm not sure how I'd finance this requirement but I am certainly missing out on all the new and improved strategies in education (of course, on the flip side, I'm also missing out on all the here today-gone tomorrow strategies as well). I am so motivated by the idea of the reader's notebook. Although I felt like the author could ha ...more
A great book written from the trenches of the classroom, this offers many ideas and suggestions that can easily be used in many classroom settings.
Dona Howe
Several of Aimee's "strategies" or activities that she illustrates in the book look fantastic. I think they would be useful. This book wasn't exactly what I was looking for, however. Although I recognize and embrace the reading-writing connection, this book was really more about the writing than the reading. I was looking for guidance in using reading notebooks in the classroom to help with assessment (formal and informal) during reader's workshop. Although Aimee does talk about assessment and p ...more
Lisa Dahling-thompson
It was helpful to gain a few more hands on strategies for the reader's and writer's notebook. A quick read.
Diane Mchugh
Some good mini lesson ideas for Readers Workshop, including some real aloud book titles.
This book affirmed a lot of the things I am already doing in reading, but gave me practical ideas and encouragement to do many of them in a better way or in a more efficient way. It's easy to read and follow and very practical.
Shaeley Santiago
Mar 19, 2011 Shaeley Santiago rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: reading teachers (3rd - 9th grades)
Quite similar to Buckner's Notebook Know-How: Strategies For The Writer's Notebook but with more focus on reading strategies such as Leaning In, Fab Five, History of a Reader, What I Know to Be True about Reading, and Character Connections. A fairly quick read with lots of student examples to add depth to her descriptions.
Feb 23, 2014 Gail rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 2-6 gr. teachers
Recommended to Gail by: Jill Corkery
Aimee Buckner has written a practical and inspirational guide for using reader's notebooks. She has included many easy-to-implement mini-lessons as well as a section on assessments. This is a must-have for any teacher who wants to have students using a reader's notebook in a purposeful way that deepens understanding of reading strategies.
I got quite a bit our of this book, including "What I Know To Be True About Reading," a concept I found myself expanding upon. Younger students might have trouble with Buckner's 2 notebooks, one for writing thoughts and one for reading thoughts. I especially liked her lesson/information about summarize versus retell. A worthy book for teaching professionals.
Barb Keister

Good ideas for launching a reader's notebook - strategies that teachers can also use as models in their own reader's notebooks. Assessment is always tricky in reading workshop, but Buckner provides some practical ideas ranging from student reflection to developing rubrics. Good practical resource filled with student examples.
Good start, but then it seemed to focus more on writing than reading. I know they're linked, but it just felt like Buckner fell back onto writing more about her personal strength (teaching writing). I was hoping there would be more focus on pulling literary elements into the reader's notebook. Still good overall.
Although I loved Aimee Buckner's Notebook Connections for the Writer's Notebook, I was truly disappointed with her recent release for the Reader's Notebook. It seems she is a writer at heart and fails to focus her new book solely on reading, much of the book slides into suggestions for the Writer's Notebook.
Tiffany Neal
I got some good ideas from this book, some that I really liked and some that I would definitely have to tweak to make work for me.

Some of her points, I don't completely agree with, but overall this was a quick read to give me some new ideas for how to make the readers' notebook work in my classroom.
Pretty much every Aimee Buckner book is great. She gives real, applicable ways to use notebooks in class. So many professional literature books utilize theory, and give you very little applicable, relevant material. Buckner's books are not like that. She is very user friendly, and very readable.
I am gravely disappointed by this resource, after hearing so many good things about this teacher/author. There is nothing new here! There is an artificial tang throughout. She did not help me connect reading and writing notebooks in any way other than I would have done it before picking up this book.
Aimee Buckner's books are great, and this is no exception. I especially like how she balances the descriptions of the WHAT and the WHY in her texts. In this book, Buckner takes the writer's notebook into the reading/literature classroom. I love books that make the reading/writing connections explicit.
Rikki Heggy
In reading this book, I was hoping to find some new ways to authentically work with reader's notebooks in my classroom. While I did find a few things try, I didn't always agree with Aimee's philosophy. This is a good jumping off point for teachers who are new to the notebook.
Krista Tillman
Some great ideas for rubrics I hope to use for assessing my student's reading notebooks. Also has some great lesson ideas. Having taught for a few years now I didn't find many new ideas in the book, but it included some good examples and new spins on lessons I'd like to use.
Doris Herrmann
Focused on pulling writing ideas from reading material, this book is a great resource for the middle school teacher using writers workshop. The ideas are based in sound theory, and look like they'd be engaging for the students as well.
While geared more toward teachers of upper elementary/middle school. There were some bits that were applicable to the younger group. It definitely gave me things to think about in regards to my 1st graders.
A great on how to begin or improve reader's workshop. It is easy to relate to the writing, and there are plenty of ideas for any teacher to consider for his or her own classroom practice.
Susan Kennedy
Aug 15, 2011 Susan Kennedy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: all intermediate teachers
This is one of those made-you-think books that will really change your practice. Highly recommended to intermediate teachers & coaches. Great companion to Still Learning to Read.
Some good ideas on ways to use reading notebooks more I want to read her writing one (she references it several times in this book).
Angela Hernandez
Many strategies to get kids writing in their reading notebooks and ideas on how to assess the journals. Nice reading-writing connections as well!
I don't think I would use reader's notebooks in exactly the same way as the author does, but I did get some good ideas from this book.
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  • Study Driven: A Framework for Planning Units of Study in the Writing Workshop
  • 10 Things Every Writer Needs to Know
  • Writing Workshop: The Essential Guide from the Authors of Craft Lessons
  • Comprehension & Collaboration: Inquiry Circles in Action
  • Comprehension Connections: Bridges to Strategic Reading
  • So What Do They Really Know?: Assessment That Informs Teaching and Learning
  • Conferring with Readers: Supporting Each Student's Growth and Independence
  • Mosaic of Thought: Teaching Comprehension in a Reader's Workshop
  • Write Like This
  • Mini-Lessons for Literature Circles
  • What Readers Really Do: Teaching the Process of Meaning Making
  • Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading
  • Igniting a Passion for Reading: Successful Strategies for Building Lifetime Readers
  • Lessons That Change Writers: Lessons with 3-Ring Binder [With Three Ring Binder Full of Lessons]
  • How's It Going?: A Practical Guide to Conferring with Student Writers
  • Holding on to Good Ideas in a Time of Bad Ones: Six Literacy Principles Worth Fighting for
  • Choice Words: How Our Language Affects Children's Learning
Notebook Know-How: Strategies for the Writer's Notebook Nonfiction Notebooks: Strategies for Informational Writing Inside Notebooks (DVD): Bringing Out Writers, Grades 3-6

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