This article considers students' classroom notebooks, their character and their role in learning. The results presented were found within the framework of a broader international project, the Learners Perspective Study, whose goal is to identify classroom practice from the students' point of view. Two 8 th grade classrooms were studied. In each, every lesson over the course of three weeks was videotaped. After each lesson, two students were interviewed and their notebooks entrees for that lesson were photocopied; once a week, the teacher was interviewed as well. From the analysis of the data it became apparent that the notebook in the classroom is a public object; it is ever open for inspection and contains only finished work. That it is not a private object, in which the student may freely record preliminary ideas, musings, and reflections, may affect student learning negatively. The categorization of public and private as a categorization of learning activities is discussed. The relationship between the findings on notebooks and research on writing and classroom journals is discussed; in particular, a connection is made between public and private domains and transactional and expressive writing, respectively.
- Mathematics classroom notebooks
- Public and private domains
- Transactional and expressive writing