Here’s a few things I pulled out of one of my storage boxes, about half of which is filled with childhood notebooks from the late ’70s to mid-’80s.
First, a small orange looseleaf notebook. I was probably in about 6th grade when I decided to devote it to Astronomy and colored the cover with a metallic marker, which I guess I thought might look kind of futuristic and space-y. I pasted in a few pages worth of astronomy pictures, but didn’t get very far with it. Instead of using looseleaf paper, I filled the binder with pages from two spiral notebooks, including the back cover of one of them.
This 1981 diary was used over a period of several years, when I went from having no idea how to fill a page other than with doodles to at least writing some little lists and comments about my friends and homework I had to do. I loved this kind of diary, which always included extra pages with useful info. Note how I amended the list of US presidents with the newly-elected Ronald Reagan.
I made this fabric notebook cover myself, gluing it together as best I could, probably because my mother didn’t want to sew it for me. She used to do a lot of sewing, so there were always fabric scraps for me to turn into notebook covers, but most of them didn’t turn out very well, as I tended to have overly complicated ideas about secret pockets and pen holders. This one contains a stapled pad I made out of some sort of billing forms from Harvard, which one of my relatives used to bring home from the office for me to scribble on. I never wrote anything more than this one thing on the first page of the notebook.