Friday, November 16, 2012

Flip Chart Observation File Folder

A great way to record students’ behavior, absences, tardies, bathroom passes, preparedness, etc. is to create a flip chart using a file folder and index cards (enough for one per student plus a few extras).

I use colored folders to coordinate with my class color (yellow- Math for College Readiness, purple- Geometry and green- Precalc) and 3”x5” index cards.

Place the open file folder on a flat surface and start at the bottom on the left, leaving about a half inch.  Turn the index card upside down so that the pink line is at the bottom and place a small piece of tape at the top.  Line your next card up on the pink line of the first and tape it down (don’t use glue).  Continue until you have half the number you need or you reach the top.  Then, do the same on the right side of the file folder.

Write students’ names at the bottom of each index card.

I keep my folders in a file folder pocket chart clipped to the side of my podium for easy access.  Some years I will change the cards each nine weeks and others I will change them at the end of each semester.  I simply take an X-Acto knife and cut the tape to remove them.  Then, I file them away until the end of the year.

Flip Chart Observation File Folder

Monday, September 17, 2012

Parabola Activity

I can't wait to use this (review) activity with my Precalc class.  As the students come in the room, I'll hand them a parabola graph card.  They will go to three different areas and pick up the equation card, the axis of symmetry card and the vertex card.  

There are only 12 of each, so I made two sets.  One set is shown and the other one is printed in blue, green, teal and purple.  I will post the answers on the smart board for them to self-check.  

This isn't my original idea.  Credit to follow...

Patterns Activity

Today, my Math for College Readiness classes started the section on Patterns and Iterations.  Ahead of time, I made 8 sets of 5 colored cards.  On each colored card, I wrote 4 or 5 terms of a sequence.  Students' desks are already in groups of 3.  Each group got one set of cards and a half-sheet worksheet.  On the worksheet, students brainstormed to come up with the pattern for each sequence and the next 5 terms.

It was definitely a success!  They enjoyed the challenge and worked well together.  One of my sequences was O, T, T, F, F,...  Most of them were able to figure it out without a hint.

Patterns Activity

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Geometry Basic Figure Review

Earlier this month I came across an idea from @misscalcul8 that was apparently taken from @msrubinmath!  So I carried on the tradition and modified it slightly myself,  making it totally on the computer, no bad handwriting days!

I printed out 7 copies on a color laser printer and laminated them, then cut out all the pieces of 6 of them.  The seventh one is my master.  I also printed out 6 blank copies and laminated them.  Each set of 30 cards was put in a baseball card protector, hole-punched then put on a ring.

Today, was the day I got to use it with my 3 Geometry/Geometry Honors classes.  Their desks (individual tables) are already in groups of 3, so each group got a laminated blank worksheet, a set of 30 laminated cards and a blank worksheet for each student to fill out and save as notes.  The students were shown how to get started using the document camera, then they set to work.  As each group finished, they asked me to check their answers before they filled out their own worksheet.

Two classes went by before I thought that I should take pics for the blog!  And of course, all I had was my cell phone!  They didn't turn out too bad.
 Credit: @msrubinmath

Credit: @misscalcul8

My blank version...

My master copy...

Geometry Basic Figure Review

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Station Activities

This year I will be starting "Station Activities" in my math classes (Geometry, Precalc and Math for College Readiness).  Two of them will be set out for each class each week.  Students will take turns working on them during the week.  Most, but not all, of them will have accompanying worksheets.

This activity is to review the properties of quadrilaterals.  It consists of the orange paper, which has 7 quadrilaterals listed, and the business cards, which have the properties printed on them. Students will go through the cards and place each one in the correct rectangle beside the quadrilateral name.  All properties are represented as many times as applicable.  The sheet in the folder is the worksheet (2 to a page).  On the backs of the cards are numbers.  When all the cards are distributed, the student will turn them over and record their numbers on the worksheet for each quadrilateral.

I found this idea on Pinterest.  So far, I have only made 8 of them, mostly for Geometry.  I used a (scrapbooking) circle cutter to cut colored paper that I had already laminated into 7.5 inch diameter circles.  I wrote on them with a Sharpie which dries out the marker quickly.  In the future, I will cut, write on, then laminate.  Some have an inner circle that contains a drawing (see below), all are divided into 8 sectors (but I am working on some that will have 16).  The problems are written in the sectors and the answers are written on clothespins.

Here's one that has an inner circle.

In this example, I decided to include 3 incorrect answers.  They are answers the students would most likely get if they did it incorrectly.

Another Pinterest idea...the other side of the chip says "add"...

Below is the half-sheet worksheet to go with this station.
These are soap containers from Walmart.  I labeled each one from the inside with the name and on the end with how I plan to use it.

I will hand these out as students arrive and have them call out what is on their card and the simplified number.  This will be used as a review.

Students get one when they come to class.  After bellwork, I will tell them to line up at the front of the room in order from smallest to largest, without talking.  They will have to simplify the rational expression before lining up.  There are a couple that are the same number just in a different form (-1.25 and -1 1/4).  I can't wait to see how they will handle that!

This is my Student Function Machine that I wrote about in a previous blog post.

I have 3 activities on rings.  Elapsed Time, Making Change and Order of Operations.  Each one has a worksheet to go along with it.

I am keeping a master copy and answer key for each station in these folders by topic.

I bought a hanger for pants at Goodwill for 99 cents with the thought that I could probably use it...somehow.  Well, when I was looking for a way to hang my ziplocs, it was the perfect solution.

The last type of station that I have created is called Tarsia.  These are puzzles that the students put together similar to dominoes.  I've printed out 5 of them on colored paper.  I didn't laminate mine, but I might in the future.  You can find out all about them here.  There are also files you can download at the bottom of that page.  NOTE: Software is PC only.  Here is the solution for Laws of Exponents (downloaded free from link above).  You will print the "output" and cut apart.  Print the "solution" to grade it.  If you cut out the solution, students may be able to piece it together simply by looking at the way it was cut.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Words into Math

Last year, I found (and made my own version of) a study sheet called "Words into Math" for my students in Algebra 1.
(Credit: I Speak Math)

I decided this summer to adapt it using posters, word strips and velcro into an activity.  I bought colored poster boards at the Dollar Tree and began cutting out each sign from a different color.  I drew the arrow and parentheses on half sheets of white poster board.  I had bought word strips the year before at the Dollar Tree (yes, it is one of my favorite stores!)

I wrote out all the words from the sheet above on the word strips and trimmed them.

I cut 1 inch strips of velcro and placed the soft side on the words and the other side on the posters.

Here is a picture of my work in progress.

This is what the students will see when they come in.  I will hand out the words on strips when they walk in.  Since there are 34 words, some students will get more than one.

I will explain the activity and have a couple of students at a time place their word(s) on the poster(s).  If someone is struggling, he/she can ask a classmate for help.

As a group, we will discuss the words and determine if all of them are placed properly.

This is my intro to word problem solving for all levels that I teach.  It will be new to some and a refresher for others.

These will be hung at the back of the classroom from the ceiling on clips with string (Lakeshore Learning store in Tampa).

This is what the activity looks like when it's ready to store.

Words into Math

UPDATED: I noticed that the picture of the Words into Math Worksheet and the uploaded doc had errors.  Both of those have been corrected and re-upoaded.  Sorry for any inconvenience!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Classroom Pictures (Linky)

 This challenge will be posted for 2 weeks.  After that, I will have a different challenge for each of my 3 preps (Geometry, Precalc & Math for College Readiness).  Worksheets will be placed in a manila envelope for each one.  When it is turned in, I will grade it and keep it in hanging folders I have for each student.  It will count as an extra point or two on the next test.
 The yellow trays are where each class will turn in their Exit Cards.  I used these last year and really liked them.  The green dishpans are for their workbooks, which I don't allow them to take out of the classroom.  If I assign a workbook page, they tear it out, hole-punch it and keep it in their binder.
 I bought composition books from Big Lots for 39 cents and put one in each folder.  Students will use these as a journal as well as to demonstrate to me (one-on-one) how to solve a problem.  They will have to write out what they did in each step for credit.  These, too, will stay in my room.
 The black container on the side of the shelves will hold make-up work.  BW stands for bellwork.  Everyday students will pick up a bellwork sheet, complete it in the first 5 minutes and turn it into another set of yellow trays to the right of my door (see below).

 These containers will hold my stations.  Students are required to complete 2 stations per week.  I will post pics of stations I have created on my next blog post (many ideas from Pinterest).  They will be used primarily for review, but on occasion I will throw in something new.
 My assignment board...I have used one every year I have taught (12 yrs).  I fill it in at the beginning of the week, but students know it is subject to change.  To the right, I post all upcoming tests about a week in advance.  Quizzes are spontaneous.
 I laminated an extra piece of fabric (left over from covering a table), die cut letters and hot glued it all to my wall.  The blue sheets are my rules and procedures.
 BAV stands for Building Academic Vocabulary, but if the students want to think of it as "BA" vocab, that's fine!  Whatever gets their attention...LOL!  I used a cute butterfly duct tape to divide my pocket chart into 3 preps.
 Here is the fabric covered table.  I've been told I am getting 2 student computers, so I set up this spot for them.  Not sure if they will be desktops or laptops, but I have plenty of room either way.
 I LOVE BUTTERFLIES and turquoise and lime green! Under the window, I hot glued 3 posters I created demonstrating Cornell Notes.  One is descriptive and the other 2 are examples in math.  Check out the tissue papers balls...from Pinterest!
 I am an organizer and a self-proclaimed container freak!  I love the Dollar Tree and they love to see me walk in!!!  I spend a lot of money there, but not as much as if I bought the stuff at other stores.
 My desk and more organization.  This area is taped off with lime green duct tape on the floor to show students that they are not allowed to be behind my desk.
 My poster wall...I bought one of these posters and made or printed the rest.  My philosophy is that I will have informative posters around the room for students to read at their leisure.  Then when it's time to learn the material, it will seem familiar to them.
 The rings are 3 of the stations I will be using.  In the folders, I will keep and master sheet and an answer sheet for every station, filed by topic (polynomials, circles, order of operations, etc.)
 Pinterest has given me so many ideas for this year.  The saying "You can have RESULTS or EXCUSES not both" came from a pin.  I made it in Word, then used our poster printer to enlarge it.  The disadvantage to using the poster printer is that it prints in one color.  Knowing that, I used an outline font, printed the poster, colored the letters, then laminated it for a more colorful look.
 I like this board, but I really need some black paper to go behind the colored paper so it is easier to read.  I ran out of my black scrapbooking paper, so I gotta make a trip out of town.
 I also enjoy using pocket charts.  This blue one contains folders for my organization: attendance, book lists, new student packets, referrals, etc.
 The red pocket chart contains class folders, colored coded and numbered by period.  The colored ones are flip charts I made using index cards.  If a students has a minor discipline issue or is tardy or absent, I keep those notes in here.  I take them with me to parent conferences.
 One tip I learned 12 years ago from a former elementary teacher (THANKS KEL!) is to laminate posters, then hot glue them to the wall (only if they are concrete!).  The hot pink poster is about test corrections.  It was made using our poster printer, black "ink" on hot pink.
 More posters below the board...the "Sharpen your Pencils" poster came with another for a dollar at, wait for it, Dollar Tree!
 Yet another pocket chart... When a student misses a test, their name on a index card goes in this chart.  This year, I am going to have them sign up (on the calendar under the apple) to take their make-up test after school.
This is posted on my door for Back to School Night next Thursday.  I used to make my own QR codes, one for parents and one for students. Idea is from Pinterest.
This is the view from my door (prior to putting up the butterflies and tissue paper balls).  These desks are new to my room.  I'm looking forward to more group activities and these desks will be easy for the students to move.
This is the view back the other direction.  My door is to the far right in this picture.

If you'd like to follow me on Pinterest, here's my link: KelsoeMath