Monday, September 12, 2016

Support Math Class: Days 12-13

Friday, Sept 9th
1. Circle Talk
       We just did a quick couple questions about reflecting on the week.  These are their least favorite questions.  I need to figure out how to phrase them differently.  I am still getting mostly 1 word answers.  I know I need to be patient.

2. Number Talk
       As we do everyday, we did a number talk.  This was the final bowl of cereal estimate from estimation 180.  The students have really been explaining their thinking process well this week.    We will continue to use these estimation 180 problems to continue to encourage their mathy communication.

3. 15 game
       We have been using Friday as fun math game day so far.  This little adding game was a pretty big hit.  They started off thinking this game was too elementary for them.  Then they realized the strategies involved and were doing lots of number sense thinking.  A big hit.  

Monday, Sept 12th
1. Circle Talk
       A check-in round from the weekend.  A quick question about what they are looking forward to this week.  (it always breaks my heart when they say nothing).  Then a couple what-if questions.  A good circle day with laughter and good stories.  

2. Number Talk 1
     An estimation 180 problem.  Since I am picking the new problems I estimate answers as well with the class and do not know the answers before we go over them.  Today, it was a "how fast will Mr. Stadel walk" and we all underestimated his walking speed.  Only 1 groups minimum was low enough.  Led to a good point about making good ranges.  

3. Number Talk 2
    We used this pattern and found out how many in figure 5 and 10, then went for a general rule.  We used this as a springboard into their 1st learning target of SHOW WORK.  We talked about examples of 4, 3, 2 and 1 on the Show Work rubric.  Then we had each group write up their answer and then the class graded it together.  

Tomorrow we will go over learning target 2, asking for help.  We will see how that one flies.  

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Support Math Class: Days 8-11

Coming off Labor Day over the break, the class is going well.

Last Friday - Day 8
Circle Talk
We reflected on the week.  The highlight for me was when I asked "what was your highlight of the week" and two students said the support math class.  First major victory of the year!
Number Talk
The students are tiring of number talks.  However, the thinking is so good for them.
Sprouts Game
I taught the class Sprouts and it was a really good time.  They took to it and were engaged the whole time.

Tuesday - Day 9
Circle Talk
Just questions about their weekend and prepping for the week.  They requested some more would you rather questions as well.  Those are always a good time.
Number Talk
Switched it up to some estimation 180 questions.  We did the first cereal estimation task.  The students struggled trying to explain their reasoning for their estimations.  Getting them beyond, "I don't know I just guessed" is hard.  I made them write down 3 numbers.  Too high, too low and their best guess.
Number Talk 2
We did another pattern to review their math from regular math class on linear relationships and proportional relationships.

Wednesday - Day 10
Our football team won 66-12 the week before.  So I took Dan Meyers 3-act problem "Bucky the Badger" and used our stats instead.  Our cheerleaders do jumping jacks after every score.  So we estimated and calculated how many they did for the entire game.  A good thinking problem on our early out day with 30-minute classes.

Thursday - Day 11
Number Talk
We did the second cereal estimation problem from Estimation 180.  Today went better than Tuesday.  The students, working in groups of 2, estimated the solution.  Each group then explained their reasoning and did quite well.
Number Talk 2
Another visual pattern to help review linear patterns and writing equations.
Practice Time
We have not set up our DreamBox accounts yet.  I am still trying to recruit so we can have enough for the 40 minimum students required for a school account.  So I sadly used the IXL program for practice.  The 7th graders identified proportional relationships, and the 8th graders identified linear relationships.  It went fine.  Hopefully, it built some confidence for their upcoming quiz.  

All in all a good few days.  Tomorrow will bring back some circle talk to help reflect on the week.  Then we will review for the quiz.  

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Support Math Class Day 7: Circle Talk, Number Talk and Sprouts

Circle talk again opened JH support math class today.  First question was "what are two words that describe how you are doing today?"  Sample answers:
        "Good, very good."
        "Good, great."
        "Fun, funions."
So I will have to try another strategy to get longer answers on that opening round.
Other questions from today:
1. What is your favorite junk food?
2. If you knew you could not fail, what would you do?
      (inspired from my amazing 6th grade teacher neighbors)
3. What does the best case scenario of school look like to you for this year?

I also included a summary of the talking pieces I have used so far this week.  Trying to change it up and see what sticks with the kids.  These are all just things around my desk so far.

The R2D2 thing is actually an eraser.  Which allowed me to explain to the kids that I love Star Wars, and I love fixing mistakes.

The number talk went really well.  They are getting closer and closer to coming up with rules for the patterns.  Again the pattern came from Visual Patterns.  

We finished up the pattern a little early, so inspired by Sarah Carter's great #teach180 tweets, we learned how to play the game sprouts.  They were totally engaged and loving it.
Here is a quick YouTube video explaining the game.  

A great week so far!