Blank Notebooks


We tend to think of schooling

in terms of







these are not usually

timeframes that


remarkable results.


Even an entire single school year

is not

as long as we perceive it to be.


great works, great things

are often created

over years or even decades.


Professional writers,

for instance,

don’t throw away their

notes, or notebooks

or drafts after a year.


They don’t pick a single piece or two

and hide it in some folder

to prove that they did some work.


No. Their drafts, their notes, their notebooks

stay with them. They get carried around.

Always there to be mined.


Just like professional writers,

we need to help our students carry

their work with them

through the units,

through the quarters,

through the semesters,

and through the years.


This is how great work gets made.


The new year shouldn’t start with a blank notebook.


It’s inefficient


dishonors the creative process.

Staring at a blank notebook

at the start of the school year

is not fair to students

or teachers.


Trevor (@trevorabryan)

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