Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Daily Class Structures

PreCalculus and statistics will remain as they have previously.  Last year was the best year I've had in precalc. The students were largely successful and there were few complaints about the class.  Statistics hasn't had enough students enrolled to make the last 4 years.  So, that class will be more or less refamiliarizing myself with the material.  

Geometry needs the most "work".  In the past two years, nearly half of the students enrolled in the course have failed due to many factors.  But, this year I am taking that responsibility entirely.  In the past we have chalked the failure up to the lack of effort on the part of these students.  While I expect this will still be a problem, I am going to do everything I possibly can to prevent apathy from being a major component of student failure.  
1. Start each class period with 5 warm up problems.  These will consist of problems that review previously taught material (look up Retrieval Practice in Make It Stick), as well as problems that review topics that will lead in to upcoming material (ex, writing equations of lines prior to talking about equations of parallel and perpendicular lines).  PearDeck and Desmos Activity Builder will be the main method of completing these exercises.  I intend to use the data collected as a type of formative assessment.  During this work time I will be checking homework assignments following the lead of the illustrious @sqrt_1.  She describes her wonderful homework checking process in this post.
2. We will then go over questions on the previous day's homework assignment.  Based on past experience, this shouldn't take up too much class time. 
3. Main lesson is part 2. I have a Promethean board in my room and I intend to use it for more than a glorified whiteboard. I want to get the kids up and moving more.  My hope is that making the students more mobile will also help increase student learning. I also intend to incorporate more connections between algebra and geometry this year so that the students realize how interconnected these courses really are. 
4. Work on the daily assignment for any remaining class time. I would also like to use this time to meet with struggling students to determine ways that I can help them improve.  We do have RtI scheduled multiple periods per day.  Students can be removed from PE and placed in the class with teacher recommendation. 

I feel as though these changes are manageable and am hopeful that they will result in positive changes for my students. 


  1. I can't wait to hear how it's going. I have also been thinking about Amy's homework method. Do you plan to make any tweaks to it? My only worry is how much class time it might take. :(

  2. I am glad to read about your experience in the classroom. It takes a lot of courage to confess your mistakes in the planning, but I am happy that you have decided to somehow change your teaching ways for the students to stay motivated about such a difficult subject as math. I am sure soon enough it will be easier for them to face challenges in this subject and they won’t even have problems to get custom essay papers online when they need one.