Inspired by a wonderful discussion among #mtbos members on Twitter on how many holes a straw has, I made the following question the warm up today:
Does a straw have 1 or 2 holes?
Before first block started, I had the following conversation with a student:
Student: Mr. Belcher please change the warm up?
S: Because it’s gonna be a big fight! *mocking voice* NAH MAN IT HAS ONE HOLE BECAUSE-SHUT UP SHUT UP-LISTEN-IT HAS ONE HOLE
Me: But that’s what I want! *smiles*
S: *exasperated look*
The student was correct. Her class gets very lively when I give debates like this. Almost too lively and sometimes I have to referee so everyone can be heard, but I far prefer the intensity of first block to the apathy of a later block.
And I got some really excellent arguments out of first block. In fact, one student, with zero prompting from me, made an argument based on a hole in one sheet of paper, then a hole in two sheets of paper. He needed a little help to verbalize the jump from two sheets of paper to the whole straw, but I was really impressed what was essentially some calculus-like understanding from an algebra student.
My geometry block was mostly indifferent to the warm up but I pushed a couple of my very bright students really hard to explain different scenarios with straws and potatoes and spheres. It was fun.
The warm up was the bright spot all day. My entire family unfortunately got sick over break, so I have felt like garbage since Thursday and I really didn’t feel any better this morning. But I had just taken two personal days at the beginning of last week and we just had a whole week off so I couldn’t justify taking a sick day to myself. I went to work
It was rough. I didn’t do a whole lot of teaching. I gave all of my classes computer and bookwork and generally didn’t spend too much time trying to make them focus. I just wasn’t up to the task.
I am really hoping I feel better tomorrow because I can’t push off learning new material in any of my classes, but if I feel like I do now tomorrow it is going to be rough. I definitely did not have the energy or the presence of mind to do any real teaching today.
So lots of liquid and bed rest for me tonight.
Thanks for reading.