Saturday, September 22, 2012

Week #4 -- Geometry


This week we spent the first part of the week on some Algebra Skills that were hurting our work with supplementary and complementary angles. We introduces a project where the students are to give a brief 3 minute presentation where ANGLES are seen in sports, work, or other activities. I met with students on Friday to check on their progress. They are researching Hair Styles, Basketball, Softball, wrestling, and many other areas. The Presentations are DUE on Thursday. I can't wait to see what they have found.

We also started working on Area and Perimeter in terms of Squares, Rectangles and regular shaped polygons. My favorite part of the week was the Area of a Triangle Rap.

YOU HAVE TO SEE THIS! It's great. (OK, the kids think I'm nuts. But it is a pretty crazy way to learn a formula!)

Flocabulary Triangle Area RAP!

This week we will work with more BASIC Geometry CIRCLES. We will also work on improving our Math and Algebra Skills.

Week 4 GHS Math 2012 -- Algebra 1

Another great week of Algebra 1 and Geometry at GHS.

Algebra 1
My Algebra 1 students really worked hard this week on skills. We continue to work with Inequalities and solving for variables. I really threw some TOUGH problems at them. Even though we had one frustrating day, we are making through and getting better. We had some fun with Dy/Dans 3Acts - Cheese Cutting Problem. I am convinced my students think I'm nuts. But I had fun working this RIDICULOUS, but interesting problem with them. Click the link and see what it's all about!

Lucky Cow - 3 Acts Cheese Cutting

We also started a GREEN Car search project. The students need to research 5 cars for their impact on the environment. They then need to analyze the data and make a choice of the 5. They MUST use Mathematical Reasoning to justify their decisions in a written report 1 page in length. They also need to use a spreadsheet to present the data and a graphical representation of that data. Projects are due Thursday!

The students work will be judged on the Scoring Rubric Below:

We will continue to work on this project this week along with more work on Algebra skills!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Back to the drawing board!

I just got done grading my Algebra 1 first Skill Assessment of the year. Not what I was expecting. One of the things I noticed today when they were taking it, they are in such a BIG hurry. Many, many silly mistakes and a lot of negative signs wrong. So, we go back to the drawing board. No sense moving forward until we get this! We'll re-teach and re-assess! I will NOT let them fail!

On a bright note, the Notebooks are getting BETTER. I saw major improvements on organization and completeness!

My first Geometry skills assessment is on Friday, I hope they're ready. They will turning in notebooks on that day and taking the assessment.  REVIEW, REVIEW, REVIEW.

I Can say most of my students are working hard. The ones that have been putting in the GREAT efforts did great on the assessment! Go figure!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Great Week!

It was just a 4 day week but it was productive.

Algebra 1

The Algebra 1 classes spent a solid 100 minutes on Khan working on skills. We were able to work through several problems and I was very happy with how focused the students were at getting work done. Today, we started a GUITAR DESIGN project. Yes, this is a Math Project. We watched a great video how making Custom Guitars is a VERY MATHEMATICAL process. We are focusing our MATH on the design and location of the FRETS. Students were given a worksheet with ratios for the Fret Positions. They had to make some calculations, convert to fractions, recognize a pattern, and then apply the information to the Guitar MODEL they were asked to design and build.

Getting students to THINK CRITICALLY is not easy. I hear a little "whining" when I wouldn't give them answers! Sometimes STUDENTS are so "Teacher Dependent". I saw the work they were doing and thought they were making good progress toward their designs. The FINISHED Guitars are to be done by next Friday. I can't wait to see the finished products!


We nearly wrapped up the INTERIOR DESIGN project and will complete the final wall on Monday. We went back to working on some KA skills yesterday and today. I am impressed with how hard this class is working. Most of them are on schedule with their skill work. I turned notebooks back over to them, but STILL some have to really work on their organization.

As a reminder, here is what they need in their notebooks, (both Algebra and Geometry)

1) A copy of the Course Map - list of Skill Topics we will cover
2) Section for Notes - Worked examples, and "How to" notes I give in class as well as notes they take on the KHAN videos.
3) Vocabulary Section - Special Vocabulary and definitions covered in class
4) Scratch Paper Section- Paper where they show their work making calculations during skill work
5) Project Section - Special Project Assignments
6) Teacher Comment Section - Scoring Rubrics for the Notebooks, Work Progress Reports, and Life Skills.

GHS really believes in Data Notebooks and this information along with their Khan Academy Data really help a student KNOW where they stand in class.

Great week with GREAT students. I LOVE MY LIFE AT GHS!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

This week!

Another week, I think my classes and I are finally getting to know each other. This week we worked on organization. I helped students organize their google docs and their Data Notebooks. I wish students knew how important a life skill it is to be organized. I have never seen a job where it wasn't important. When I reviewed the notebooks on Friday, I realize we have more work to do. Oh well, it's early. 

In Algebra, we did a team building activity called, "What bothers you?" This is a fun activity where I can get some ideas about future POTENTIAL projects for class. It is also helpful to get students working together and open up during class. I had some great input on our second week of WPRs. WPRs are weekly progress reports completed by students as feedback for me. They did a great job completing these. I am happy with our skill progress and teamwork. I am still wanting students to work on positive attitudes and the "Happiness Advantage". I want my students to work on positive interactions with each other, teachers, and community. 

In Geometry, we had to restart our class project. But, we made some good progress on Friday. I feel this project is as important or more so, than the skill work we are doing. I also collected notebooks from this class. They were a little better than my Algebra class, but we still need to work on organization. With a small class like this we are really able to work on our teamwork. But, I still want  to have them work together more when they don't understand something. This class also gave great input on our weekly progress reports and many examples of positive things that happened in and out of class this week. 

Parents of both Geometry and Algebra students should get on Khan Academy to follow the skill 
progress of their student. I can't wait for the start of another week!