Sunday, October 30, 2016

#Teach180: Days 21-30

This year I've taken the #teach180 challenge and am attempting to tweet one picture from my classroom every day.  So far this has helped to hold me accountable for planning lessons that have at least one picture worthy moment per day.  I find myself being more mindful about opportunities for student engagement.  I'm also putting these posts together so that I can share the resources that I have collected and created.  Hopefully you will find something useful here.

Day 21:  Today the students practiced writing biconditionals and good definitions in geometry while playing a childhood board game.  I wrote more about using board games in class here.

Day 22:  On this day, my algebra 2 students practiced distributing and factoring out greatest common factors using +Desmos.  Here is a link to the activity.  I especially like how this activity focuses on the connection between distributing and factoring out a GCF.

Day 23:  Today my geometry students practiced the congruence and equality properties of reflexive, symmetric, and transitive.  They did this by playing a game of Old Maid.  I wrote about the activity here.

Day 24:  Today was a quiz day.  I give a cumulative quiz every fifth day of class.  I use a version of standards based grading in my classes and these weekly quizzes make-up 85% of my students final grade.  Check out my page on standards based grading if you'd like to know more.

 Day 25:  Today my students asked "Could we have used difference of cubes first instead of difference of squares?"  I said "YES! Lets do it!"  Then I got stuck and had to reach out to my tweeps for help.  Within an hour, I had help.  Just another reason to love using twitter for your PLC.  I followed up with my students the next day.  It was a great chance to model what to do when you are stuck.

Day 26:   I borrowed Forrest Hills City Designer project today.  Students created a map using angle pairs such as alternate interior, same side exterior, and vertical angles.  One of their weird mistakes that I saw several times this year was students identifying a set of angles that were on different transversals as alternate interior.  That is something I'm still working on correcting.

Day 27:  Today in geometry students discovered the relationships between several sets of parallel and/or perpendicular lines using this desmos activity.  This activity was originally a worksheet from my Prentice Hall Geometry book.  I just converted it to an activity builder.

Day 28:  Today in algebra 2, students practiced factoring using the sum and difference of cubes patterns using desmos.  Here is a link to the activity.  At this point the activity is just one page with a card sort.  I'm planning on adding some additional slides leading up to the card sort and a reflection slide after the card sort.

Day 29:  Another quiz day today.

Day 30:  Today in geometry, students discovered the polygon angle sum theorem using this activity.  This is an example of how some activities are better with paper and pencil than in digital form.   At the very least, I like to use a mix of high tech and lo tech activities.

That's it for days 21-30.  It's not to late to join in the #teach180 fun!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

#Teach180: Days 11-20

This year I made a goal to tweet one picture from my class each day.  I'm also trying to blog bi-weekly about what is happening in my classroom.  Here are the tweets from days 11-20.

Day 11:  On this day, algebra 2 students reviewed linear inequalities by playing a game of 3X3, which is similar to bingo.  There are 4 boards and a deck of cards.  In each group of four, students turn a card from the deck face up.  The card has a linear inequality.  Students look at their boards to see if they have the matching graph.  If they do, they mark that box.  The first student in the group to get 3 in a row wins.  Play can continue for second and third place.  I found the original assignment from @MathBerts here.  And here is a link to the the document that I edited.  I blogged about this activity last year as well.

Day 12:   Today the geometry students completed some perimeter and area problems for complex shapes.  I just took images from a worksheet and copied/pasted them into a powerpoint document to create a set of task cards.  I wrote about this assignment previously here.

 Day 13:  In algebra 2, we completed an error analysis assignment for graphing systems of linear inequalities.  I created the assignment by doing a google image search and pulled several error analysis problems from various digital textbook  samples.  I also added a place to redo the problem correctly.  Here is a link to the document.

Day 14:  Today was another quiz day.  I give cumulative quizzes in each of my classes every fifth day of class.

 Day 15:  Today in algebra 2 we learned about domain and range.  This was a challenging lesson for students.  We found domain and range from a graph and the domain from an equation.  Students were also introduced to set notation and interval notation.  This topic will be revisited throughout the year as were learn to graph all sorts of functions.

Day 16:  Today in geometry I finally got to try the My Ship Sails game that I wrote about here and that Dan Meyer recognized here.  It went just as well as I hoped it would.  I heard lots of great conversation about conditional statements, hypotheses, conclusions, and converses.  I look forward to building this activity into more lessons in the future.

Day 17:   Tonight was parent's night.  This night is a challenge each year because it is scheduled before I know all of my student's names.  I also always have to field lots of questions about standards based grading and hybrid learning.  I wrote about my plans for this evening here.

Day 18:  Today in algebra 2, we completed practice of linear regression by collecting and fitting data.  Here is a link to the assignment.   I had one group that wanted to collect data on a topic that would have no correlation.  My first thought was to not allow them to do so, but I thought it would be interesting to have them reflect on their low correlation coefficient and why the slope and y-intercept of their line of best fit turned out as it did.  It was a good choice.  We had a good conversation as a class later.

Day 19:  Today was another quiz day.

Day 20:  Today in algebra 2 we practiced adding and subtracting polynomials.  Here is a link to the activity.  I think the original activity came from Sarah Carter but I'm not totally sure.  Students use a deck of cards to randomly choose coefficients for the polynomials.  Red cards corresponded to negative coefficients while black cards corresponded to positive coefficients.  The kids enjoyed the tactile twist on the otherwise plain worksheet.

If you have any feedback on any of the activities I've shared, please leave a comment.  I'd love to know how you would modify them.  In the meantime, its never too late to join the #teach180 fun!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

#teach180: The first 10 days

This year I responded to @mathequalslove's challenge to join #teach180.

I have to admit that I thought I'd have more trouble remembering to take a picture every day.  In reality, I almost never take a picture during class because I'm so busy teaching and working with students.  However, I remember to take screenshots of our notes or an online activity or I remember to take a picture of student work at the end of the day.

This year I'm lucky enough to have only 2 preps, CP geometry and Honors algebra 2.  I try to represent both classes equally in my #teach180 posts.

Now, finding the time to blog about this has been a whole other challenge.  I'm aiming to collect my tweets and reflect on a group of them every other week.  So here we are, finished with 41 days of school.  I'm going to try to blog about 10 days at a time.

Here are the tweets and some comments as well as links to some of the resources:

Days 1-4:  For the first 4 days of class, I spent about half the period on content and half the period on beginning of the year stuff.  I didn't want kids to space out while I went over a syllabus (for their 6th class in a row) and I also wanted them to get in the habit of doing good work right from the start.

 I blogged about Draw What I Say here and I downloaded the direct variation from @MathBerts  here.    It took a little while for students to get the hang of the domino activity because many of them never actually played dominoes with their families.  I find that this is the most common challenge that I have in incorporating games in my class.  I typically have to teach how to play the game before we can use the game to practice content.

Day 5:  Starting on day 5, my students will work in stations most days are part of my hybrid classroom.  I've done PD on hybrid and wrote about it here.  If you scroll to the very bottom of the page, you will find links on how to get started in hybrid.

Day 6:

Here is a link to Clint's activity that I used for students to practice solving systems by substitution. I like that the activity is not just practice in solving systems, but also a chance to students to interpret the meaning of their solutions.

Day 7:

I wrote about this assignment here.

Day 8:

Day 9:  Starting on day 9, my students will be taking a cumulative quiz/test on every 5th day of class.  I used a form of standards based grading.  I wrote about it here.  I should probably write a new post soon explaining some of the changes that I've made over the last year or two.  This year, I am giving students variations of the same quiz (same topics) each week for the nine weeks of the marking period.  I grade the quizzes based on a 5 point scale and then students skip questions that they have already mastered on the following weekly assessments.

Day 10:

Here is Christina Nowlin's activity on applying distance and midpoint.  The link includes 2 versions of the task as well as a worked out solution.

It's not too late to join #teach180, please join in the fun!