Saturday, September 16, 2017

#SundayFunday: My Favorite Lesson so far This Year

This is week seven of the Sunday Funday blogging initiative.  It's never too late to join in!  You can read more about the challenge here if you like.  This week's challenge is to write about our favorite lesson.  I have a hard time picking a favorite lesson, especially one that I have not already blogged about.  I love all of the following:

However, I'd like to write about something new.  So today I'm writing about CPM's "How High Will it Bounce?" lesson.  I added some technology to this lesson to connect estimating a line of best fit and using a graphing calculator to find the linear regression line and correlation coefficient. 

Here are some screenshots pictures and videos from the lesson.

Today in #alg2chat we used @CPMmath's "How high will it bounce?" lab to practice linear regression #teach180

Finally, here is one sample of the student blogs:  Baybars C – Bouncy Ball Lab Blog

Thanks for stopping by!  Don't forget to check out other Sunday Funday blogger favorite lessons :)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

#SundayFunday: Emergency sub Plans

This is week six of the Sunday Funday blogging initiative.  It's never too late to join in!  You can read more about the challenge here if you like.  This week's challenge is to write about our plans for substitutes if we must be out unexpectedly.  

First, let me say that I have had a similar version of this plan in a file folder for about 10 years and I've thankfully never had to use it.  Also, since I've switched to a blended model in my classroom, I am completely confident that my students could survive a day or two without me and without any type of sub plan.

Here is my current online organization for students:

I try to keep lessons posted about a week in advance.  This way, if a student is planning on being out, they can work ahead if needed.  I've also built a routine where students log into Schoology first thing each period to see what the daily assignment is.  I include everything in a Google doc.  This includes the warm-up, notes, instructions videos, and practice questions.  Here is a sample daily Google doc.

While students are working through this lesson, I call students to small group time.  I base the groups off of the most recent assessment and we review previous skills that need improvement.

Thus, if I were to have an emergency, the first thing I would expect my students to do is to work through the daily lesson.  Of course they would miss out on small group instruction, but at least they would not have a wasted period.  Where things get sticky is that about 2 days per week, I use a collaborative task rather than the blended/small group instruction model.  So if my emergency happened to be one of those days, students might need a plan B.  For example, tomorrow one of my three preps will need square tile manipulatives and counters for their collaborative assignment.  Those supplies are already sitting on my desk, so I think a sub could pull off the intended lesson.  However, if I had not pulled those supplies, they would be at a loss.  Or, if I would be out the day of a test, that might also be challenging for a sub to locate the exam.

So, here is my plan B emergency plan for when following Schoology proves impossible.

In my current file folder, I have some written directions about attempting the Schoology task first and then to use a photocopied problem solving assignment if needed.  I've been working to put this online as well.  

This is meant to be a week long emergency sub plan that students could complete.  I'm also considering using the plan in the event that our state passes legislation allowing for digital snow days.  Of course, in the event of a digital snow day, this would still be my plan B.  I'd hope to be able to carry on as planned with the regularly planned Schoology lessons.

So there you have it, a pseudo emergency sub plan :)

Please check out the other #SundayFunday bloggers! 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

#SundayFunday: Teacher Hacks

This is week five of the Sunday Funday blogging initiative.  It's never too late to join in!  You can read more about the challenge here if you like.  This week's challenge is to write about teacher hacks.

I had some trouble thinking of hacks that I use, so I went around my room, looking for creative ideas that I have learned over the years.

Hack 1: Never buy a stylus!  Pick them up for free at conferences :)

Hack 2: Buy a $20 electric tea kettle.  It's perfect for Millie's Sipping Broth and tea during study hall or a planning period. 

Hack 3: Tony Riehl  posted this idea to twitter awhile back and then shared it again at #TMC17.  Phones are not the only distraction, so have something large enough to hold, say yearbooks, in May.  I also keep a pad of post-it notes in the box so kids can label their distraction with their name before putting it in the box.

Hack 4:  Label all the things! I have never taught in the same classroom for more than 3 years in a row.  So I'm always packing all of my stuff up to move.  I got smart awhile back and stopped unpacking fully.  I just keep most things in their labeled box.


Hack 5:  Buy more storage to house all the extra classroom supplies you splurge on.  Seriously, this has become a bigger issue since Sarah Carter introduced me to NAEIR.

Hack 6:  Shoe polishing mitts are great for dry erase pocket erasers and calculator tape is great for making manipulative number lines.

Hack 7:  Business cards and half-sized index cards are great for making task cards and cards for review games.

Hack 8:  You can buy giant rolls of graphing paper.  I used this for an Ozobot project.

Hack 9:  I give _____ of the month memberships as gifts sometimes.  The boxes can be spray painted turned used in the classroom.  I've used them for station supplies and general storage.


Hack 10:  I've used my old legos (from Santa if you notice) as game pieces for review games.

Hack 11:  Group work and be turned in and returned in laminated, numbered folders.  They last all year.

Hack 12:  Phone accessories make great prize box items, as does candy.

Hack 13:  You can revive dried out markers (one time only) with pliers, an eye dropper, and rubbing alcohol.


Hack 14:  An iPad stand and an app like Reflector or Stage can turn your iPad into a document camera.  This is great for teaching topics like geometric constructions.

That's all for now.  Be sure to check out the other #SundayFunday posts!