I’ve been lax on blogging lately, it seems I just can’t keep up. There has been quite a bit going on in my classes, at home, at the district, I could go on, but I’m sure you don’t want to hear it. I’ll just share what’s happening in my classroom.
My algebra classes are “rockin’ the house” with transformations. They really get it! They are loving making the transformations within and out of the coordinate plane, and understand how to reflect over a line without a Mira. The rotations slowed them down, for a minute, but they quickly caught on and are doing great with them also. Everyone is working and trying, in fact, a couple of my toughest students have become leaders in the class, leading discussions and helping other students. Today we went over the mapping again, and they caught on quickly and were calling out coordinates before I even asked or had them on the board. They derived definitions of reflection, translation and rotation from their work, and can clearly explain what each is, differences and similarities. I’m very happy that the choice our district made to go to Integrated Math next year allowed me the opportunity to introduce these topics to these students. They are really enjoying seeing something different, and several are actually beginning to believe that they “can do math.”
My geometry students are improving this semester. To their account, a lot of it was probably our inability to visualize the transformational geometry at first, and working on creating the course as it should be. The gift for me this semester is I get the chance to do it again, and improve as I go. The other part is that I have gone back to teaching the way I teach best. Inquiry and problem-solving. The students are responding well to it, and are beginning to be willing to think their way through a problem. I’ve given them a couple of challenging problems from GoGeometry and the discussions have become much more insightful and thoughtful. I am also beginning to feel less stressed, more like myself, and have relaxed with the students, creating a much more positive atmosphere. So far, I’m really excited about this semester and hope to continue to see good things.
On the personal front, I’m excited about NCTM in NOLA coming up in April. I’m hoping to meet several of my new twitter buddies, and more in July in Jenks, OK. I’m also taking a stab at writing full activities, and hope that I’ll have something I feel is worth sharing soon. I want to sincerely thank the MTBoS for becoming a huge encouragement in my professional life, and helping me learn to be more social also. You are all the best!!