Rookie Year: Day 87

Today went well classroom management wise, but I definitely will need to set assigned seats for Monday. There was more conversation between or during activities because students have gotten to know one another or are becoming more comfortable in a new class.

I reinforced class expectations with a syllabus quiz today where I immediately gave the answers after the quiz. (Because of course I really wanted to just remind them more than test what they remembered on the syllabus.)

We played Quizlet Live and reviewed additive and multiplicative inverses as well as the three fundamental rules of algebra. All of the classes really enjoyed Quizlet and asked to play more than once, which was a refreshing change from last semester where I had to pull teeth just to get them to play a game. (I still am not sure why they were so reluctant to play a game–the only thing I can think of is that the questions were too difficult for them. Or they were just being stubborn. I don’t know.)

I summed up what we learned and practice in the Desmos Linear Systems activities with some definitions and examples. I really like the format of playing around with ideas AND THEN giving formal definitions, but I don’t think I will be able to do it for every single lesson this semester. Having the pre-made Desmos activities was a huge help with that set up.

This blog post is really going to be all over the place. More than usual I think. Sorry.

I’d like to set up posing problems and having the students solve them first, but even though my students are more focused and behaved, they still struggle without some direction. I really struggled today with getting them to verbalize connections between a graphical solution to a system of linear equations and an algebraic one. It clicked for some, but not all and I wasn’t getting a lot of responses, especially from my middle block. I am also hoping a re-assigning of seats will help with this. Some “back-row” folks are going to find themselves in the front on Monday.

I met with the ESOL coordinator for the district today and talked about this past semester and the coming semester.

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I left off here yesterday so that I could drive home and finish after eating dinner and then when I got home I told myself I would finish it today and now that I am here typing I am not in the mood for it. I’m really grateful to get this mid-year reset and I think it’s going to make a huge difference for not just surviving my first year teaching high school but actually doing a good job. I’m just not feeling it right now. I can’t concentrate enough to write a coherent post, even at semi-stream-of-consciousness, just-getting-what happened-out-of-my-head-and-written-down standards. Sorry.

Thanks for reading.

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