Show and Tell: Pixanotes!

I'm thrilled to participate in the FIRST EVER Show and Tell Linky from Stephanie at Forever in 5th Grade!

I would like to share a brand new resource that was born and raised in my own Middle School classroom:  Pixanotes!

I had been looking for ways to boost my students' ability to comprehend and recall information and came across some interesting research.  According to Dr. Kouyoumdjian ... 

Research has proven that visuals decrease learning time and increase comprehension and recall!  This is why Pixanotes was born!

I always loved anchor charts, but after reading this article, I thought how can I do more to harness this power of visuals?

That's how Pixanotes was born!

The idea is to use a hybrid of regular two-column notes crossed with interactive notebooks consisting of fill-in-the-blanks on the right for critical information and picture "flaps" to illustrate key ideas on the left!

The pictures serve as memory cues to help students remember the critical information.  

So then I took my new notes to school...

Pixanotes are perfect for introducing new concept vocabulary!

The notes were great for introducing critical content with a Cornell notes and interactive notebook hybrid experience.  Students were super engaged and working together!  Yes, working - including  my Special Needs and ESOL students!  In fact, it seemed like this was right up my exceptional students' alley!  I heard all sorts of conversation focused on the topic at hand.  Good conversation too - they were discussing why certain visuals were a good match and why others were not.  
This would have been perfect for my observation!!

Then I thought, what could we do to use these new notes and visuals to practice our learning?

I actually came up with TWO ideas for practice:

Pixanotes dominoes are a great way to practice with the new concept vocabulary!

The students loved the game!  The first round was just getting the hang of things and trying to remember the terms.  The second round was "game on" and everyone wanted to win even though the "prize" was just bragging rights!  That's when I knew they were hooked!

So then I also thought about how students could practice digitally...

Pixanotes gone digital for another level of engagement!

...because students love their technology!  
We worked on this Friday and it was another good review and practice opportunity for students.  I am curious as to which type of notes they prefer - paper or digital.  They seemed equally engaged on both so we'll see!

Any way I go with Pixanotes, I have already seen some very encouraging engagement.  And one thing's for sure - they definitely have some great ways to recall the information!  For once, I'm excited for those test results!!

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Wow! I think your pixanotes are a great idea! It's so fun to come up with something new and watch it work wonders in your classroom, isn't it? Thanks for linking up!

    Forever in Fifth Grade

  2. I could definitely see how the pixanotes are ESOL friendly. Pictures speak all languages simultaneously. Great idea!

  3. Great visual ideas. Vocabulary, comprehension, recall....the list of ways this could work can go on and on.
    The Research Based Classroom

  4. Fantastic idea! It reminds me of a word association technique I've used to teach vocabulary to my first graders. Not sure why I haven't used that lately. Thanks for the reminder!
    Not very fancy


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