I use (and love) the Open Up Resources/Illustrative Mathematics 8th grade curriculum. One thing that I find a bit lacking in the curriculum though is time for students to reflect on what they’ve learned and consolidate their understanding. I very rarely ask my students to take notes, but I do ask them to write journal entries about what they’ve been learning. They usually do this in regular notebooks, but this year I had to go digital.
Here is the digital journal I created to go along with Unit 3: Linear Relationships. It doesn’t align exactly with the lessons because I made some changes due our wonky distance-learning schedule. The key concepts are there though and could probably be used with most curricula!
My co-teacher suggested that the journal might be overwhelming for some of our students with IEPs so I created a pared down version that has vocabulary support and requires less reading. Check it out here.
Here are a few examples of my students’ reflections from Slide 4: Write a paragraph summarizing what you’ve learned about proportional relationships.
Besides asking them to summarize their learning, I tried to force them to ask a question every day. I think this is good for them! It was also interesting for me:
These journals gave me immediate insight into what kids understood and what they were/were not able to articulate. Super useful! They also made for great Warm Up prompts and led to nice conversations.