English empiricist John Locke's philosophy, tabula rasa, was the theory that at birth the mind is a "blank slate" with data being added solely by one's experiences. The APUSH Tabula Rasa Notes are designed to provide a blank slate for students to generate notes based on their own engagement with course content.
As many teachers and student already know, the most effective note-taking skills involve active rather than passive learning. Active learning places the responsibility for learning on the learner. Research has found that, for learning to be effective, students need to be doing things with the material they are engaging with (reading, writing, discussing, solving problems). APUSH Tabula Rasa Notes are designed to get students thinking about the thinking (metacognition) involved in engaging with course content. This means that, while students are exploring the content, they should also be thinking about how they are learning it.
This one of a kind product provides over a 100 pages of note space with 80 headings and subheadings anchored to the essential elements of the Advanced Placement United States History curriculum. The headings and subheadings for each note page are crafted to succinctly tell the student what to focus on, without offering in-depth analysis of the content. By incorporating hook words and phrases, each heading and subheading provides a generalized frame for the context of the topic being explored.
Each blank note page encourages students to reflect on the material and review the content by generating notes on their own. They have space to reflect and generate notes from lectures, texts, websites, readings, video clips and podcasts. The ultimate goal is to encourage students to organize their own notes around the relevant chronology and incorporate specific factual information that can be used when studying for a test, quiz or essay assessment. While taking ownership of the material, students can also exchange ideas and collaborate with other students to check for understanding and test the comprehensiveness of each other’s notes.