Tuesday, August 21, 2012

First Day of School! First Day of School!

Yay! I survived my first day of school and I didn't lose any children! I most definitely announced this at my staff meeting that followed the first day on Monday. Technically, I've now survived two days but as I had mentioned before, we're not in our content classes yet, just in our advisory all day. I almost find this to be more difficult as my Masters' classes hadn't prepared me for teaching a class that wasn't math.... Anyways, I figured I'd share a few things that we did!

Of course I had to be the awesome new teacher (I'm the only new teacher at the school) who brought in krispy kreme for her kids so the kids nommed on donuts and picked up my syllabus and the schedule for the day. After everyone had come in, I played them the video above because as I said, I know that is exactly how they felt this morning! We did the usuals such as introductions but with the twist of when introducing themselves, they had to explain where their name came from and we got a lot of interesting responses as well as some, I don't know ones... I then went over the syllabus and had my upperclassmen explain what "advisory" was. I hadn't given too much info on myself so I allowed each student to ask me any question, school appropriate, to me. Those were fun and the kids saw that I did have some personality. I got asked about my best friend and if I had any kids and other typical questions but it was still fun to have some stories to them.

I then had my kids split up into mentoring teams where the upperclassmen were paired with a lower classmen and were to use the time to give them some advice. They all were pretty engaged as I had emphasized this was a good time to get the tips and tidbits that I could possibly not provide or was not aware of (i.e. don't use this water fountain as it sprays out).

It was then time to go outside. We're near a park that has a mile long loop so we walked a mile (bad idea in my shoes as I'm still feeling it with my blisters). After the walk, I posed the question: "What or who would you walk 100 miles for?" We had been posed this question during our teacher week and there was the possibility of some deep responses. My kids gave me some typical teenager responses but some did provide me with some well thought out answers and insight into who they really were.

Inside time again and this was my time to get some information. I had found a cool student profile that was Facebook themed on pinterest so I'll use this LINK because I can't figure out Scribd at the moment.... After the kids filled out their profile, they wrote a letter on the back to me talking about what they were afraid of for the year, their hopes, questions that they still wanted answered, ideas for the year, and any other information that they really wanted me to know. One student drew me a picture which I can only assume is myself...
She nailed my raised eyebrow smiling expression..... The rest of the day went alright as well and I've just begun planning more lessons that I will share as I get less busy but I'm trying to have some hours to myself. Can't be losing my  mind during my first year!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Door Decoration

Today was my first day of teacher work week and I have to say I am extremely lucky. I have a small group of wonderful coworkers and I think I have successfully memorized each name. Anyways, we took a field trip for some team building activities that we will be doing with our "advisories" next week. Advisory is kind of like homeroom but I meet with my advisory twice a week for 40 minutes. Over the course of the year, we do a service learning project together. It sort of serves as a family base at the school. The activities that my kids will be doing next week were fun but also meaningful.

When I got home, I began doing the summer reading that I had found out about the previous week. Each student will read the same book and turn in their responses to me during advisory so it's generally a good idea for us to read them. But I also began working on a class decoration that I had found on pinterest. Now, I'm not going to decorate my room too heavily as we switch rooms halfway during the year to keep it fair. But I saw this and absolutely wanted to make it for my door. I think it really did a great job of showing sentiments that I believe in.... It says
When you enter this classroom ...
You are mathematicians
You are a friend
You are explorers
You are important
You are loved
You are respected
You are the reason
We are here!
Love, Miss Rudolph

I had found the fonts through all those free font services on pinterest and just played around with it. It's another cheap classroom decoration to make and it's also a really cute and different door decoration idea.

I also have to start working on my unit learning targets more so. I had mentioned that I was teaching Algebra 2 and Trigonometry classes this semester and so far, I have learning targets for the first unit of each. Goal: Complete a list of all learning targets for each unit. Then, Calendar. Then, Lessons. I think it can be accomplished :)

First up, Linear Expressions and Inequalities for Algebra 2 and Data Analysis and Probability for Trig. I welcome any ideas for both! Especially as they will be taught in block!
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