Sharing ideas for teaching math in the middle school.
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Ready for Students
It's that time when the room is set up and ready to go for a new school year. My website is updated with a student resources page containing my homework calendar, online textbook, 8th grade algebra Livebinder containing favorite helpful student sites and a link to my algebra Moodle course. Tarsia number match cards are on the corner of the desks. Students will get a corresponding card for them to match up as they walk into the room to find their seats. Classroom desks have a welcome letter from last year's 8th graders filled with information on how to be successful in 8th grade algebra. (I make copies to keep for myself because they are so fun to read.) These letters give students something to read while they wait for class to start. I have discovered over the years that several students keep these letters and still have them at the end of the school year tucked inside their textbooks! My teacher website with a welcome note from me is displayed on the screen.
The first day's lesson plan is very simple. After welcoming students to the classroom I ask them what previous students said in their letters they've just read about how to be successful in my classroom. We usually have a laugh or two about some of the things previous students have said about me which really helps to break the ice. I share with my students how to access my teacher website and we look it over quickly. After giving instructions on how to enroll in my algebra moodle course and showing them where they can find my classroom rules and expectations, they take an on-line quiz on Ms. Roitz in Numbers. This usually leads to several fun questions and dialogue between myself and the class. I then ask them to write a story about themselves using numbers and math which I plan on having them upload onto the site You Are Your Words which creates a picture of themselves that I will display around the classroom. We probably won't have time to upload their stories that first day but here is an idea of how they turn out.
That is pretty much it for the first day. I follow this day up with having my students take a math learning style survey and showing them how to set up their interactive math notebook for algebra and then the learning begins in earnest!