The restart

Posted on June 11, 2012

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So. I’ve realized I start almost every sentence when I’m changing thought processes with the word “so”. It seems appropriate to start this blog with “so”.

So. Here we go.

It is summer break. I’ve been out for two weeks and have no idea, apart from Statistics, of what I’m teaching. But I know that I want to change. I have a Twitter addiction, and I’ve been reading a ton over the last two weeks. OK, a ton over the last six months or so.

There it is again. So.

I am so inspired to change how I teach and interact with my kiddos. I am making the move toward Standards Based Grading (SBG), and did a dabble of that during the second semester of last year with my Precalculus kiddos. It rocked. I’m ready to go all out for next year.

I am going to do more PBL this year. This is tough for me personally as I hated collaboration when I was a student, simply because I was not going to put my grade into the hands of knuckleheads. I have seen the research and testimonials, though, so for my kiddos, I’m going to give it my all. I’m glad Statistics lends itself to PBL though.

I am also also inspired to delve whole-hog into heavy Formative Assessment. I bought the NCTM handbook for such things in math(s), and am typing the baseline worksheets from it. I will try to figure out how to use Google Docs at the same time, and put those up there. That is probably some kind of copyright violation, but I don’t really care. They can come arrest me. I’m not typing the whole book; I’m typing the worksheets as templates. How to use the templates is up to the individuals who use them. I’ll share links as they get done.

I also get to be the adviser for the amazing kiddos in my school’s chapter of the National Honor Society, and my goal this year is to truly teach them something about leadership, one of NHS’ core values. I am, however, very much not a leader  so I have to (get to?) learn with them.

I am alsoalso trying to compress the LiveBinders I’ve created into useful bits of information. I have tons, and there are tons, probably better ones, out there. But they are awesome for keeping the amazing ideas people have been sharing. I’ve linked to my public ones below. They aren’t pretty with a ToC or a cool picture on the cover, and they definitely have a “Ms. A” flavor, but I hope they can help.

LiveBinders:
Comics, Cartoons, and Jokes: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=350921
Blogs with a Great Point: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=303166
Lessons: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=302859
Teacher Stuff: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=302856
Websites with Lists of other stuff: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=302843
Helpful Tools on the Web: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=302842
Games and Activities: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=364113
Leadership, Character, Life: http://www.livebinders.com/play/play_or_edit?id=402329

If anyone has any advice on how to make this as painless as possible, I’m all ears. Or eyes, as the case may be.

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Posted in: School