Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Day 1: Algebra 1

I just finished my first 2 sections of Algebra 1. They were okay :).  It's my prep now and I need to debrief for myself and make plans for tomorrow, so I thought - why not blog about it?

First of all, my Algebra 1 classes are the largest ones I have at 38 apiece.  Quite a lot of freshman in one room!  I realized I planned a little too much for the first day and didn't account for how long it might take them to do simple tasks.  I'm in my 6th year of teaching, you would think I would know that by now... but I really thought I planned it out well!

I started the day by introducing myself with pictures and stories to get them engaged.  It took about five minutes and I warned them "they might want to pay attention".  Then, I had them introduce each other to their group members and put their names on the seating chart.  I know absolutely NO names after today... usually I know at least one or two.  It was just crazy, I guess!

Then I gave them their first quiz.  It was a 3-minute, 20 question quiz on me - all of which I answered in my little intro.  I had one "writer" per group, but the paper had to rotate every 30 seconds or so, that way all the students were involved.  I definitely have some students who stick out to me as disengaged, but hopefully we can get them off on the right foot!

Then I asked them one question: "Wouldn't it be nice to rewind me and listen to me again?"  First, they asked, "Does this count for points?" (of course), but I asked them to think just in general in terms of if it was a math test.  I would say 75% of them raised their hands and said YES.

Then I told them that my classroom was going to be different than any they had had before.  I said that at first it's going to seem strange and they may not like it, but they will get used to it and it will really help them.  I explained the basics of the Flipped Classroom to them (just the basic flip of what they would recognize in terms of CW/HW flipping for right now - the other stuff is over their heads for the time being).  I could see some kids eyes light up as I explained the "traditional" way of teaching and how they wouldn't have to feel bored, lost, or overwhelmed anymore.  I really think the first impression was pretty positive (we'll see once they actually have to work and think!!!).

I briefly explained what a WSQ was and then they watched the KIRCH Strategies for Success video (6 min).  In 1st period, I had the students split into their 7 groups with 7 computers (5-6 per computer) and honestly, it was a bad idea.  It took the kids so long to figure out how to open the internet, and then six kids crowding around a computer just didn't work.  So, in 2nd period we just put it on the projector and I was in control of the video.  Either way, I did it as a learning experience for how frustrating it is for someone else to be in charge of your learning and they seemed to get it.  We didn't make it through the whole video, so we will continue to review it tomorrow. I wanted them to write their first WSQ as well, and that didn't happen.

Tonight they are watching their ten minute "intro to flipclass" video and taking notes. They are supposed to complete a WSQ (option for handwritten or online) and ask at least one question.

Tomorrow's plans:
1. Go back over their "hw" for the week, the supplies they need to get, have them put the Google Voice # in their phone, show them quickly how to sign up for Edmodo, etc.

2. Review the FC intro video and answer any big questions.  Discuss expectations for the flipped classroom for students, parents, and teachers.  Talk about how to watch a video for education and not entertainment.  For both of those, I have a live Google Doc I will be adding to every period and it will update on the Sophia tutorial.   Students can turn this in today or go back home and watch it again and turn it in the next day.

3. Review the KIRCH strategies for success (maybe re-watch)?  Have students complete summary individually and ask one question.  Turn this in.

4. Emphasize some important things:
-You must READ
-You must COMMUNICATE if you have questions

5. Watch first "math" video together (5 minutes) on Linear Translations.  Model as a class

Write a WSQ together (handwritten)
Start PQ1 together

Most likely:
Show how to do WSQ online; have them do at home (already planned)
Do PQ1 at beginning of class on Friday.

Whew! I've got 3 classes of Math Analysis all afternoon.  Most of those kids will already know what is going on because of their summer work but I still need to make sure I cover what I want and get them ready to go.

Anyone else feel like Day 1 just goes way too quick?

1 comment:

  1. Mrs. Kirch, send some of your students my way. Keep up the good work! Saw you were mentioned with Mentor Mob on which was cool. I am getting myself organized for my Algebra 2 class. I updated the links to my blog, but I think uploading a mentor mob list would make sense.


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