Day 33: The One with 3 Reads

Maybe 3 summers ago, a colleague of mine did a session on the 3 reads protocol. The idea is to read a problem stem (a mathematics problem, but without an actual question) 3 times. First, the teacher reads and the kiddos look for the main idea. Next, the teacher or a student reads and the kiddos look for all the numbers and what they mean (Are they negative? What do they represent? and so on…). Then, the kiddos read and try to ask as many mathematical questions about the problem as they can. The teacher then either picks a question or reveals the question to be investigated.

Curriculum partner was out for the day, so I decided to give it a whirl.

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It was surprisingly easy to set up. It also gave kiddos a way to cut through the wordiness of the problem by getting them to think about the main idea and then the numbers and how they were related. They could bring in the rest of the words as necessary, but they weren’t a barrier. I spent about half an hour the night before trying to find the perfect problem in several textbooks and just ended up writing a pretty standard (boring) problem. Which worked fine.

Definitely on the docket to try again soon.

Day 18: The One with the First Quiz

We just gave our first quiz of the year (though technically the group quiz was probably the first of the year, so I guess this blog post is already a lie).

Thought process is that it’s pretty similar to the group quiz but with enough changed that the kiddos have to prove they know the concepts, but aren’t totally thrown by new, irrelevant things.

Got some solid work, especially from some kiddos who tend to leave their papers blank:


Fascinating also to see where kiddos get stuck. We asked them to draw their own pattern with the point (5,16) and it ended up being more of a stumper than we expected.

Also, the littlest advisee (the same one I spent my 34th birthday chasing around the school in an attempt to get them to do homework) drew me a truck instead:

(To be fair, they did try to take the quiz and they struggle with reading and got very little formal education in their country).

And a quote from another kiddo: “Mister, you look like a – (to friend) – ¿Cómo se dice ‘abeja’? (How do you say ‘bee’?):


Objectives:

Day 17: The One With the Review Day

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Having just given a group quiz, Curriculum Partner and I spend the next day giving the kiddos some structured study time.

We often joke that in a different world, in a different school, with different kiddos, this day would look different. Our kiddos would take their group tests home and figure out the answers and study on their own. So many of our kiddos don’t have those study skills or don’t have someone at home who can help support those study habits (though they have figured out how to send me messages through our school’s grading system, which is pretty cool) or have to work hours that put public school teaching hours to shame (one of my advisees has such a schedule and I tell him not to do anything in advisory except homework, but then he does the binder organizing and the poem reading anyway).

But we aren’t, so we have our review day.

The review day has changed the most of all the days of our 3-day testing cycle and that might just be because our student body changes throughout the years.

We currently start off by explicitly pairing the kiddos with someone who speaks the same language (Sorry, Russian speaking advisee singleton) but is at a different level of English. We have the kiddos make a dictionary and translate the words they don’t know. They then use the rubric to grade their own quizzes and make a perfect test (we’ve had them do this separately, but they kind of bled together this time and I’ll take it, I think). Then, then check for periods and capital letters, which aren’t a thing yet, apparently.

They all put their quizzes in their binders, so here’s the rubric, the task card and some extension problems (“Make up your own problem for the test,” I said. It’s a start anyway):2016-09-07-18-54-51

Gotta say, though, I was more impressed with this kiddo’s note sheet, largely because he took the time to write everything out, translate it, then write it again for a specific example:

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Objectives (in which I basically made the kiddos use their notes. #MathsHairDontCare):2016-09-07-18-54-19

Day 15: More Equations

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We do more practice with using patterns to write equations (using notes that we hastily took at the end of yesterday’s class). It takes me a bit to find the rhythm. One kiddo complains, after the fact, that the work is boring (their group trudged slowly through the 2nd problem). I show them the remaining problems and encourage them to keep their group moving so they can all move on to the more challenging work next time.

Photo: Looking at patterns in order to get the equation.2016-09-02 17.58.04-1

Objectives:

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Day 14: The One Where We Start Equations

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It’s about this time that Curriculum Partner and I realize that we are almost done with the unit. WUT?

The last part of this unit (which is technically continued as part of Unit 3) is starting to write linear equations. We have the kiddos sort different pattern representations and then look at how they are similar and different. I’m wishing we had made the connection to all parts of the equation (not just slope and y-intercept) clearer. But maybe that’s for another day or another year.

Photo: Kiddos used whiteboard markers and sheet protectors to talk about different representations of the same pattern. (I drew the shapes the night before in our first 7pm night of the year. Uy.)2016-09-01 09.06.17

Objectives:2016-09-01 15.26.27

Day 13: The One with the Menu of Patterns

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It’s that time of the unit. Some kiddos are just starting to grasp the basics and need more practice. Some kiddos are getting impatient and rolling their eyes. This is compounded by the fact that many of our new kiddos are still being normed to being students at our school and that the honeymoon period has ended.

We give the kiddos a menu of options to choose from. The default is for most kiddos to start on the same practice one (which both has enough ambiguity to keep it interesting and allows them to keep practicing strong groupwork skills). I wanted to take a photo of one of the kiddos at work and they threw all the graphs into the middle. I’ve also noticed that lots of the kiddos like to staple the little papers we give them together. Go figure.2016-08-31 11.46.03

Objectives:2016-08-31 18.52.47

Day 11: The One Where Kiddos Make The Pattern

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It’s fascinating to see how kiddos generalize patterns (going from specific figures to one that can represent any figure in that pattern). I used to think that they needed to show rows or columns of x’s, but I think I’m more interested in them being able to label dimensions.

Photos: One kiddo’s work showing figures, a table, a graph, generalized figures and observations.2016-08-29 08.59.28-2

I’m co-advising a multicultural club again this year. Monday was our first meeting. Good attendance and lots of participation. I came back to find one of the kiddos and an older sibling sitting outside my door. Older sibling also texted me (from a new, unknown number) to ask if kiddo had turned in their homework on Friday. Touching.

Objectives:

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That part of community circle where we discussed our favorite food and the idea that adjectives go before nouns:2016-08-29 15.38.14

Notes:

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