Saturday, August 2, 2014

My TMC14 Highlights!

I must start with WOW!  I had never been to such a relaxing, comfortable conference!  150 teachers who are willing to listen, learn and critic each others work.  I love the way the focus seemed to be totally different than other conferences.  I had the feeling of "I can do technology".  I felt encouraged to tweet more and blog more!  It's not that everyone needs to read what I write, but it is a reminder to myself of what is important to me and ideas that I have!

My biggest Aha moments:
1.  Every time you ask a class why, allow them to turn and talk.  Everyone's answer to why is a little different and if they turn and talk it allows the students to process.
2.  SnagIt!!!  I can't wait to create lessons using snag it for my virtual and/or absent students to experience.  What's more exciting the Techsmith guy, Jason Valade, showed me how to do it!!!!!!!  Watch out Jason, I have your email address AND phone number! 
3.  You start the problem.  I have the habit of asking students to finish solving a problem during lecture time, but what if I allowed a student to START the problem.  Then I could guide them through the entire problem as they go the direction that THEY choose.
4.  Not all secondary math teachers agree on what topics are the most important.  AND, that's okay!

Hope to see you at TMC15!! :)

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Day of JOY!

A few days ago I noticed that it was time for our Algebra 2 teachers to teach conic sections.  I noticed the Conic Cards, which I first introduced to students about 10 years ago, we're being used in several classrooms.  I haven't taught Algebra 2 for 2 years and teaching Conics is what I miss the most!  I have now sent the Conic Cards to 26 states and abroad!  I never hear from most teachers who use them, but today I did!  One of the teachers in my building sent this very kind email.

     I'm just completing another successful year of teaching conics thanks to your brilliant invention of Conic Cards.  Just looking around the room today as students review, I'm so pleased to see how involved most of the students are.  Several are sitting on the floor matching cards for practice.  Others are working on the review worksheet and I'm hearing good learning going on as they discuss how to tell which direction a parabola opens or how to graph an ellipse given the equation.  It really is amazing to see how much they have learned and even better, how motivated they are. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

It feels great to know that I have impacted student learning in classrooms of students who I have never met and probably will not ever meet!  I am thrilled beyond belief!!!