I have been trying so many new things in my 8th grade classroom because of all of the blog reading I have been doing. Truly has been fun and most are things that I will continue. Here is a summary
1) using sheet protectors as dry erase markers. Today we were working on finding slope and y-intercepts from tables/graphs/equations. I printed off a copy of my notebook file and they worked individually, discussed as a group, and then we went over the answer as a class. Again the math discussion was great in groups.
a) Bought some dry erase markers with the erasers on the lid for kids to use and going to glue pom poms on the top of the lids that I already had. Until that gets done I bought some black felt at Michael’s and cut those into squares to use as erasers.
b) saw on another blog about how they have students come with sheet protectors (from the school supply list) and then one of the first days they put graph paper in them as well as other commonly used paper so kids will always have access to graph paper
2) Rather than just have kids do the math problems like a worksheet I made it into a review game – (from misscalcul8 agan). Balloon pop review. Each pod has their own sheet of paper (in sheet protectors again – good thing I bought a GIGANTIC box of them at Sam’s club – and the GIGANTIC bag of Mike and Ike’s but that is a whole different topic!) If their pod/team gets the question right they can come up and “pop” another teams balloon – ie. put an x through it. The winning team is the team that has the most balloons left “unpopped” at the end of the game. Teams definitely teamed up and went against other teams. Made it very interesting/fun
a)If a team has all of their balloons gone they can “un-pop” one of their balloons. I started the day with the rule that if on a turn a team un-popped one of their balloons another team couldn’t re-pop it that round. 2nd hour I changed it to where that rule wasn’t in affect – let’s just say 6th hour I went back. During 2nd hour everyone wanted to be the last team to go with the balloons. I’m so glad I used to smartboard timer so the balloon thing didn’t take too long (they had 10 seconds) and we could focus on the math.
b) I was very adamant that students try the problem on their own first, then discuss it with the team during “team talk” (another new thing which i really like). The problem I was having was the teams kept talking even after they had decided on an answer so I didn’t know who was still working and needed more time. This led me to the idea of making something to where one side is red “we are still working” and one side is green “we are good to go” and I can have the groups display the color they need. this will prevent me from having to say “what groups need more team talk” 20 million times a day!
I’m sure there are things that I’m forgetting but it’s late and I have PLC meetings in the morning. ; )
And now you see why my blog is titled “sum math madness” because truly my writing/thoughts/though process has a certain madness about it! 🙂