Binders and Notesheets

For anything Science Olympiad-related that might not fall under a specific event or competition.
Rossyspsce
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Binders and Notesheets

Postby Rossyspsce » April 8th, 2019, 7:28 pm

where do you guys buy your binders? what brand? size? any bulk deals out there?

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krasabnk
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby krasabnk » April 8th, 2019, 9:10 pm

I usually buy the Office Depot brand of binders at Office Max... it is there where I usually grab my materials, not just binders. If you want a cheaper option, Walgreens, Rite Aid, CVS, and other pharmacy stores may also have binders in their shelves. Size for me usually depends on the restrictions for the event. Because Herpetology requires at most a 2” binder, that would be what I search for. Don’t think pharmacies have 2” binders though.
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby TheCrazyChemist » April 9th, 2019, 3:59 am

Staples is also a pretty good store, though I'm not sure how the price compares to other stores. However, you can find basically all the supplies you need for Science Olympiad there.
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby Things2do » April 9th, 2019, 5:52 pm

I use thrift stores. I've got up to 5 or 6 inches for a dollar or less...
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby Skink » April 10th, 2019, 8:24 am

I'm hijacking this topic because the title is ambiguous: how do you prune (let's say) hefty binders? Physics events don't need much volume, but taxonomy events do, and some supervisors pull obscure factoids that run beyond homemade materials and published ones such that you often have to draw from several different resources. Of course, that gets unwieldy. How do you decide what to cut?

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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby Arpitr20 » April 10th, 2019, 8:33 am

I'm hijacking this topic because the title is ambiguous: how do you prune (let's say) hefty binders? Physics events don't need much volume, but taxonomy events do, and some supervisors pull obscure factoids that run beyond homemade materials and published ones such that you often have to draw from several different resources. Of course, that gets unwieldy. How do you decide what to cut?
Hmm, our circuit lab binder is quite hefty, do you suggest we cut it down?
Arpitr20 placings (WA)
2019 (regional/state)
Astronomy: 5/
Chem Lab: 1/1
Dynamic Planet: 2/2
GeoLogic Mapping: 5/5
Circuit Lab: 3/4
Code Busters: -/

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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby jaspattack » April 10th, 2019, 9:40 am

I'm hijacking this topic because the title is ambiguous: how do you prune (let's say) hefty binders? Physics events don't need much volume, but taxonomy events do, and some supervisors pull obscure factoids that run beyond homemade materials and published ones such that you often have to draw from several different resources. Of course, that gets unwieldy. How do you decide what to cut?
Hmm, our circuit lab binder is quite hefty, do you suggest we cut it down?
Abbreviating sentences and making the font size smaller can cut down on binder size, as well as removing things you've memorized (provided you trust your memory). Looking at tests and seeing what's mentioned and what isn't can also help you judge if something is worth keeping in the notes. Our fossils binder at regionals was ~50 pages, but we didn't have nearly as much information as we could have. My pages are also double-sided, so that cuts down on volume.

As for whether or not you should prune your binder: I mean, as long as you can find information in your binder quickly and it isn't, like, physically exhausting to carry you should be okay? It just depends on what works for you. Like it was previously stated, taxonomy events can pull out some obscure questions and having that information in there can be the difference between first and second place. However, I'm not quite sure with physics events.
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby Unome » April 10th, 2019, 1:35 pm

I'm hijacking this topic because the title is ambiguous: how do you prune (let's say) hefty binders? Physics events don't need much volume, but taxonomy events do, and some supervisors pull obscure factoids that run beyond homemade materials and published ones such that you often have to draw from several different resources. Of course, that gets unwieldy. How do you decide what to cut?
Hmm, our circuit lab binder is quite hefty, do you suggest we cut it down?
Abbreviating sentences and making the font size smaller can cut down on binder size, as well as removing things you've memorized (provided you trust your memory). Looking at tests and seeing what's mentioned and what isn't can also help you judge if something is worth keeping in the notes. Our fossils binder at regionals was ~50 pages, but we didn't have nearly as much information as we could have. My pages are also double-sided, so that cuts down on volume.

As for whether or not you should prune your binder: I mean, as long as you can find information in your binder quickly and it isn't, like, physically exhausting to carry you should be okay? It just depends on what works for you. Like it was previously stated, taxonomy events can pull out some obscure questions and having that information in there can be the difference between first and second place. However, I'm not quite sure with physics events.
Even if it is physically exhausting to carry, that's more of a problem with the user than a problem with the binder. As long as you can get what you need quickly, it doesn't matter what your binder is like.
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MissAmargasaurus
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby MissAmargasaurus » April 11th, 2019, 9:35 am

I'm hijacking this topic because the title is ambiguous: how do you prune (let's say) hefty binders? Physics events don't need much volume, but taxonomy events do, and some supervisors pull obscure factoids that run beyond homemade materials and published ones such that you often have to draw from several different resources. Of course, that gets unwieldy. How do you decide what to cut?
I had to go through this with my herpetology binder due to the rule change. The first things to do are always smallest readable font, concise information (it really helps to bold the important stuff I've found), pictures small enough to not take up too much space while also still being legible, and good organization. When you have a pattern down for how you do your sheets, it gets a lot easier to make sure you only have the information you'll need. (Basic example: All of my ID events have followed at the very least a pattern of a section for taxonomy, appearance, and diet.) Printing the sheets double-sided can also help significantly, but in my experience this works best only if you make sure your sheets are only 1 page, otherwise some weird organization stuff happens which can make it hard to find the sheets you need during competition.

When it comes to cutting stuff down, I usually start with information that I already know very well. If you know several word definitions by heart for example, you don't need to devote an entire page to them. Pictures are something I've found we can cut down on too. Instead of an entire page of different turtle species, we cut it down to there just being 3-5 pictures. If needed, I think removing page protectors can also cut down on the size a little if you're really struggling to get everything to fit into a binder.

If it comes to it, writing stuff in by hand after printing can also save space and resources. A lot of the time me and my partner will go through the answer sheet after we've taken a test, and write down in pencil any information from it that we think is likely to come up in another test.

Hope that helps!

tl;dr - Small fonts and pictures, consistent page organization, removal of pages no longer necessary, writing in stuff after printing to save resources.
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Re: Binders and Notesheets

Postby Arpitr20 » April 11th, 2019, 2:11 pm

Hmm, our circuit lab binder is quite hefty, do you suggest we cut it down?
Abbreviating sentences and making the font size smaller can cut down on binder size, as well as removing things you've memorized (provided you trust your memory). Looking at tests and seeing what's mentioned and what isn't can also help you judge if something is worth keeping in the notes. Our fossils binder at regionals was ~50 pages, but we didn't have nearly as much information as we could have. My pages are also double-sided, so that cuts down on volume.

As for whether or not you should prune your binder: I mean, as long as you can find information in your binder quickly and it isn't, like, physically exhausting to carry you should be okay? It just depends on what works for you. Like it was previously stated, taxonomy events can pull out some obscure questions and having that information in there can be the difference between first and second place. However, I'm not quite sure with physics events.
Even if it is physically exhausting to carry, that's more of a problem with the user than a problem with the binder. As long as you can get what you need quickly, it doesn't matter what your binder is like.
We have a very sophisticated system of tabs and a table of contents, so we are able to maneuver to the right topics in our binder with relative ease... so then its beneficial to have more information?
Arpitr20 placings (WA)
2019 (regional/state)
Astronomy: 5/
Chem Lab: 1/1
Dynamic Planet: 2/2
GeoLogic Mapping: 5/5
Circuit Lab: 3/4
Code Busters: -/


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