Week One is DONE. I must say, I felt like every time I pulled out something cool to do, it was courtesy of one of my math Tweeps!
On Tuesday, the first day of school, I started with @ddmeyer’s “Who I Am” survey which you can find on his First Day of School blog. Students enjoy filling this out and it’s great for gaining some insight! I added some technology based questions on the back to get a feel for which students spend all night on X-Box live, and which do not have a computer at home.
On the same @ddmeyer page you can read about his Cup Stacking activity which we also did. This went well – what a great way to get kids applying math on day one. For homework, I borrowed an awesome Math Autobiography assignment from @Fouss. I love, love, love this! Kids were so honest and it was insightful to read their comments. Some wrote that they are visual learners, and others how they learn best when doing hands-on activities. Most wrote several paragraphs which was surprising.
On Day two I shared a “Mrs. Williams By the Numbers” prezi based on @ratzelster’s Powerpoint. Surprisingly, none of my students fell for 27 being the number of cats I own – I’m quite glad they don’t see me as the Crazy Cat Lady!! I had them write two numbers and why those numbers are important to them on an index card. I got a lot of “4 because it’s my field hockey jersey number” but also two that were the ages of people who had died recently. Not sure I would have known about those otherwise.
Next class we made an Order of Operations Foldable I’ve used for several years and glued it into our foldable books, which are kind of like Interactive Notebooks. I have gotten so many great ideas (especially from @aanthonya) on the Algebra I Interactive Notebook Page of the Math Teacher Wiki and I just cannot rave enough about all of the INCREDIBLE ideas I’ve gotten from @jreulbach’s MS Sunday Fundays and her collection of Middle School Math Blogs. I am embarrassed that I have not contributed to the Sunday Funday blogging and hope to rectify that!
Finally, we did an activity “Evaluating Expressions with Candy” (created by our district) that the students really enjoyed. I bagged about 1/4 cup of skittles in snack size bags, and students recorded the number of each color skittle for the variables. This was a great way to review a skill they should already have without it being too boring.
I just feel so fortunate to have connected with such an incredible group of math teachers on Twitter! Thank you all (and if I’ve miscredited someone please let me know so I can fix it!!). I am already looking forward to next week to try out @cheesemonkeysf’s Troublesome Phrase Translator as it is just WAY cool!