Sunday, August 30, 2015

So much to do and no time

Beginning tomorrow, I have to start integrating digital notetaking, flash cards, and on-line quizzes.  I have 55 min to have a warm-up, review, introduce new material, arrange both guided and independent practice, and have a wrap-up while integrating technology, reading and writing into my classes.

As far as technology goes, I use iPads and smartboards.  I keep promising myself I am going to set everything up on something like Edmodo, or Schoology, create movies, slide shows, etc so students can review materials when they want but it all boils down to time.

I am faced with the choice of doing it all and having no personal or down time, or give myself time and just get done what I can.  This week, I'll be working with a couple classes to get their digital notebooks started so they can work on their notetaking skills.  Most of my students have the idea that taking notes means you copy everything out of the textbook word for word.  It takes a lot of time to help them learn to put down only the material they really need in their own words with diagrams, etc.

I want to make some slow motion videos so they can see the process but I need to find time after school to make the videos.  I have to pick and choose apps and activities so students have the best chance of learning.

Tonight, I plan to sit down and figure out exactly how much and which technology and skills I am going to focus on for the next couple of months.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Since the change from what I had to the new Common Core standards, I'm having to teach certain topics to younger students who might not have the background my older students had.  Yes, I know, Common Core has been coming for a while but we didn't start using them really till this year.  So I am getting ready to introduce my Algebra I class to polynomials and identifying the increasing and decreasing parts of the graph, max and min, and relative max and min.

While surfing the internet for appropriate materials, I ran across the site Cool Math.  They have a lovely section on graphing polynomials. They use plain English with lots of diagrams and make it easy for my ELL students to follow and understand.

I'll be using this website next week for my students to study absolute max and min, increasing and decreasing, and relative max and mins.  I do know this website works on iPads.

What is nice is they have material for Pre-Algebra, Algebra, and Pre-Calculus.  I love that the Pre-Calculus section has a couple things on trig, including the unit circle.  Yeah.  This will dovetail nicely with an app I have on the ipads.

It appears there are two math game sites associated with this website.  Some of the games I've seen look really good and I know would work on a computer but will they work on an iPad?  I don't know.  But back to the cool math website.

The Pre-Algebra section matches up quite well with the topics I am due to teach this year so that is awesome.  The Algebra section will provide support for both my Algebra I and Algebra II sections while the Pre-Calculus has topics to match Algebra II and my Pre-Calculus classes.

I love websites that provide support on more than one math class.  I can assign the topic I need students to read and learn more about.  Cool!