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CASE STUDY #7: Middle School Note-Taking

When I first began working with Jennifer, a seventh grader, she was overwhelmed by the sheer load of information in all of her classes. The teachers in some classes gave a high volume of notes, while teachers in other classes relied more on handouts and PowerPoints for conveying information. Because of this inconsistency in how information was delivered, Jennifer had not developed a consistent method of cataloging and collecting information.  Our solution, and one of the techniques you will see in this chapter, was to use a combination of note taking styles, primarily visual styles like flowcharts and concept maps in the classes with more information from the teacher and more two-stage note taking techniques, like the Cornell system, in classes where teachers relied on handouts and PowerPoints.  Jennifer found that the combination of systems was most effective for her. She had, in the past, only had one style of note taking or outlining that she was able to use.  With the addition of multiple styles and strategies, her recordkeeping became much stronger and was much easier for her to accomplish.

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