We are in our last week of preparation before students arrive on Monday. The big discussion this week has been about homework. Do we not give homework because students won’t do it? If we do give it how much is enough? Do we grade it? Should students put it in their notebooks? Should they turn it in?
I’m a bit old school … just think that at the high school level a small amount of homework practice in math is essential to learning. We don’t use our textbooks in class much, so my plan is to let students keep their textbooks at home (they have online access as well) … and select a few problems from the book for homework. I want them to do this practice in their notebooks. I don’t plan to grade it. But if students want the opportunity to take a retest (a huge push in our school), then they have to complete all homework assignments or make them up before they can retest.
A second big idea this week has been analysis of standards, backward planning starting with the unit assessment, and then the development of lesson plans. We defined the verbs in our standards, identified the specific math concepts, and the context in which that math was needed. This leg work in advance of lesson planning provides great boundaries for what we need to do in class!
Now I’m looking for a fun way to collect data to illustrate Scatter Plots … any ideas?
Also … I want to know if any high school teachers use stations in their classroom and how you organize and manage them?
Last, we’ve had some fun as well … we built the tallest tower in our group on “Job Alike” day! The point of the exercise was how important it is that we collaborate! We “discovered” that we are a competitive group! I’ve done the Marshmallow Challenge with teachers before … not sure if I’ll use either of these activities on the first day.