Friday, August 31, 2012

Week 2 Reflection - Algebra/Geometry

Week 2 Reflection:

Go Cougars!  Beat Milford!  Let's go 2-0!

Algebra - gave my first assessment of the year this week (Algebra translations, rewriting expressions using exponents, evaluating expressions, distributive property, combining like terms) - the majority of students did pretty well overall - lots struggled with Algebra translations so I focused on that on Friday, the following day.

Now?!?  Differentiation - I need to find a way to keep those who are doing well moving forward while giving the intervention to those students who struggled.  Algebra always seems to have the biggest range in abilities/motivation/effort - how do you deal with this difference?  Create individual plans (sounds great, but a lot of work for me as a teacher!)?  Make up tiered activities and assign them to groups of students?  Please share!

The next unit focuses on solving equations and this is usually a better understood section of material overall, and I have an easier time creating problem sets.

Again, the lack of technology (interactive whiteboard not a go / Acer tablets not a go) has slowed things down quite a bit.  Of course, the scary thought is how all over the place students can end up once the technology is in place.  We will see.

Effort/motivation has been good overall student-wise.

Next week - solving equations (1 step, multi step, variable on both sides)

Geometry - spent this week on more constructions - overall the two classes did well.  A couple students struggled, but that was more of a lack of being able to use the compass consistently well more than an understanding of what to do.  I gave my first assessment of the year (constructions - copy segment, perpendicular bisector, perpendicular through point on a line, perpendicular through a point not on a line).  I could have done more if I had the tablets/internet access - *fingers crossed*

Students have homework over the labor day weekend - line design - opportunity to use straight lines to create some cool curvy designs, and the first "test" of responsibility as it is due on the Tuesday that we return.

Looking at creating some assignments that require the internet and see if students are able to complete them.  I can't go another week without some technology being involved.  And since I only have the 2 Geometries I think that'll be a good starting point.

Next week - Angle pairs (include Algebra), create student Avatar, begin the Geometry Rank system Ranks google doc (click here) (note: list will be edited since I have been unable to use GeoGebra at this point - again *fingers crossed*).  Also, going to try and introduce some more technology programs that we'll use throughout the year (twitter, etc.).

I will look at the Geometry Rank system closely over the weekend to get a better feel of the "flow" of topics for the next few weeks.  I'm ready to take things up a notch in these classes.

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