Every single day since the beginning of school I have stood at my door and high-fived every single learner who has walked into my room. No joke. If I miss one because I was talking to someone, I go back and find them. Well, all except for one learner who gave me a funny look and said “no”. She has told me “no” every day since the beginning of school. That is okay. She told me today there is a chance I might earn a high five from her; just a chance. That will be a good day when that happens. I am looking forward to it.
Why do I do it? Last year I did it for a week to one class. One day I didn’t. I heard from several learners that they felt I had let them down because I didn’t give them that five.
I really want to make my class special. They should NOT walk into my classroom like they walk into everyone else’s room. Coming into my room should be something special, something unique, and something to be looked forward to, not despite the fact it is math, but BECAUSE it is math. High fives are one way I can make that happen.
I was asked on the twitters what I do for warmups in Stats. I use the Barron’s MC AP Flashcards as my warmup. Everyday the learners come in and there is a question on the board. I use my Elmo to project it, all large and in charge, and they have to come up with a solution.
One idea I stress is that these ARE the MC questions review for the AP exam. From Day 2 of the year, we ARE prepping for the AP exam and they need to focus like a laser on these question. Every learner must commit to an answer, every learner must decide why it is that answer and be able to defend and convince. It has worked well for me. They take it seriously, we have discussions about strategy on questions they don’t know, and we construct knowledge using them. I am happy with that.
We are doing parent functions right now. But not in any way most people do, I think. Every function we go through this page and answer all the questions, even the ones that have no answer.
We are going through all the parent functions and detailing all the info. Then, after that, we will extend the understanding and go deeper with this document:
By the time they go through and can do all of this for every function on my wall, they are golden in almost all the algebra they need.
This connection between topics, is crucial, and I am excited to start doing some modeling with them. I will have the time because of the time I get back later.