## Friday, November 16, 2018

### Possible Ignite

Thank you CPM for the algebra walk activity that lined students up on the x axis from -3 to 3 and input themselves into the function y equals x squared.

via GIPHY

## Saturday, March 31, 2018

### 7th grade Hot Seat Review, y=kx & algebra tiles

Before Friday's assessment I used the Hot Seat to review what would be on the assessment. I like how students pointed out that the unit rate couldn't be 8/3 because where x=1 the y axis was between 0 and 1.

After each student's turn on the hot seat, I ask volunteers to explain the answers before I advance to the next slide with the answers. I then see who got 2 points on the Hot seat and how many groups all correctly answered it. I encouraged students who weren't sure to ask their group and those that knew to check on their teammates.

## Friday, March 16, 2018

### Hot Seat for Trimester 2 Final Review Session & Student Reflections

I don't do a lot of review in my class, but I felt it was necessary the day before students took their Trimester 2 final, which is 10% of their grade.

I focused on 4 big ideas from the test, and sequenced them from the most need to the least need. If you have never used the Hot Seat study team strategy, you must try it. Especially if you are reviewing for a test.

Here are the Slides I used for 7th grade:

Each student gets a chance on the hot seat to earn 2 points for their team. I half-joked at the end that some students did more in this class period then they had in Monday through Thursday combined. The positive peer pressure to understand the problem and show all the work for your team is a healthy type of pressure I believe.

I gave the students the following prompt at the end of their final: Did you take advantage of the option to retake an assessment?? If so how many times? Overall what were the positives and negatives of the grading system? Reflect on how the trimester in math went. What parts did you like? Dislike?

The best reflection was a student who said they didn't understand exterior angle and triangle sum theorem until the Hot Seat activity. That makes it all worth it for me.

Here is what they wrote by period:

1st period:
Positives:

• liked graphing and slope
• groupwork
• liked mix of independent and group work
• homework is worth only 10% so it doesn't break your grade
• thought the vocabulary and the word corresponding helped with their understanding of parallel lines

Negatives:

• disliked skill 13 (solving fraction equations and solving for y)
• teams that didn't talk or help each other
• doing homework
• transversals on parallel lines
• CPM and posters
• I should check students notebooks
4th period:
Positives:
• teacher trusts students
• Hot Seat was great study tool
• likes the amount of homework (less, more time, lagged)
• likes 3 attempts at a skill so you could see your mistakes leading up to 3rd attempt
• switching seats often
• liked Hot Seat

Negatives:

• didn't like IM Unit 1 packets 3 votes
• teacher doesn't check homework
• wants to change seats more often
• doesn't like book work (CPM) 2 votes
• students are dishonest with homework self and peer check system
• distracted during classwork
5th period:

Positives:
• hot seat is a great study tool (4 votes)
• liked Desmos partner activities
• Mystery student and class discussions
• transformations
• when classmates are not judging them because they don't understand

Negatives:

• peers not honest on self and peer check HW system
• same routine every day
• retakes must be outside of class
• some group members didn't contribute which made it hard to pay attention
• when group doesn't follow study team norms
• Hot Seat. Didn't like the pressure to get it right (2 votes)

6th period:

Positives:
• when table worked together
• liked retakes, team reading aloud (helps EL students)
• grading system shows mistakes, no dislikes
• liked Desmos Land the Plane activity
• liked groupwork, helped a lot
• liked specific feedback with weekly assessments

Negatives:

• someone not working with the group
• thought packets (IM) was boring
• didn't like y=mx+b
• disliked who they sat with sometimes
• participation grade stays the same (This made me think I need a rubric for students to fill out at start of trimester, and then revisit at end of trimester. Encouraged Ss to talk to me if they think they deserve a higher grade for participation)
So, I got a lot of good feedback. I clearly need to do Hot seat more often, despite the fact that some kids felt pressure to get it right. Students liked the adrenaline and the pace which kept them super engaged.

I discussed with my classes why they didn't like "the packets" which was the Unit 1 pilot we did of Illustrative Mathematics. Some top students said it was too easy, while a couple said it was very challenging. Kids said it was a little dry, while CPM is engaging with a storyline. They also like exchanging ideas with the whole group. On the other hand, some students liked the timing of IM where it's 2 minutes independent, 2 minutes partner, then whole class discuss. The warm-ups were super helpful because they admitted they didn't know how to do some and it made them more successful in the lesson.

Some said the homework practice problems for IM were too easy, and some said it was too hard.

I'm not sharing the grade 7 classes feedback because it was more vague and less helpful.

## Sunday, February 25, 2018

### My CPM National Conference Presentation

I had a great weekend at the CPM national conference held at the Embassy and Hilton in Burlingame. I will post a full reflection of the sessions I went to when I go through my notes.

I tried to get the word out about my session:

For my session, it was great! Much better performance than when I presented it at Asilomar. A big reason I believe is I chose to focus on solving equations with algebra tiles rather than rotating a Which One Doesn't Belong prompt around the table. We discussed how some people were flipping a tile over from one side of the equals sign to the other and I interpreted it as a valid shortcut that myself nor CPM I think have a name for. I said it's basically adding a balanced set to both sides and making a zero pair after all at once. For example, x-2=1. Adding 2 to both sides or taking the -2 flipping it over to be positive and moving it to the right side. Also, instead of solving equations with the sage and scribe strategy, I printed out a pre-gridded 4 quadrant coordinate plane using graphfree.com and put them into sheet protectors rather than passing out whiteboards. This actually worked out really well. I forgot to tell participants to keep switching roles instead of stopping after doing 1 each. Chubby Bunny for solving systems worked out well again. Mystery teacher went great. A majority of people were from outside California and then we narrowed it down by teaching above algebra 1 and hobbies. I got to talk about front loading vocabulary for a learning log exit ticket, and then briefly went over the last few activities with pictures of students doing Hot Seat. Thanks everyone who came for making it a great session!
A major part of my presentation is using Google drive to display work to facilitate closure discussions. I recorded a YouTube screencast with a voiceover to explain the process.
Here is the work participants did that I displayed to discuss:

Unfortunately I only got one picture of people in action solving an equation with algebra tiles as a group taking turns using different colored pencils (Hot Potato STS, a study team strategy)
Here is my Google Slides presentation. On the first slide is a link to a Google folder that has some of the hand outs to print out. Also some participants asked if my anchor charts for y=mx+b and algebra tiles were on the presentation. The answer is no. Here they are in tweets embedded below though.

## Saturday, December 2, 2017

### My Asilomar 2017 Presentation & Reflection

This morning, at 8 am (the first time slot session), I presented at a math conference for the first time. It happened to be at CMC North, which I had only attended once before nearly 4 or 5 years ago.

I was glad to be the first time slot. That way I wouldn't see other people's presentations first and feel inadequate. Haha.

I will be following up this blog post with a review of all the sessions I attended. Right now I need to publicly reflect on the day and how the session went.

It all started with getting over to the dining hall in the morning. It opens at 7 AM, and not a minute earlier, I assure you... To kill some time I bought a coffee the social hall and saw Suzanne Alejandre who organizes the Ignites and I introduced myself. We had a nice chat.

I scarfed down my food and jumped on the bus to the middle school. I arrived about 15 minutes to 8. Unfortunately, there was only a VGA cord, and I had an HDMI. Luckily, a participant named Marisa was presenting later and she lent me her laptop and dongle to setup my presentation.

I planned on high fiving the participants at the door and have music playing, but that did not happen. I did get to talk to people before hand and met my volunteer, Michael, who is in Jo Boaler's Stanford undergraduate teaching program.

A couple people walked in 5 minutes late, so they missed the estimation, and I had to go back to the instructions for Dyads for the 2 way partner talk about their frustrations with group work and how they establish a positive classroom culture. Then we shared out.

People hadn't heard of Sara Vanderwerf's name tents, so I was glad I got to share that. Also, which one doesn't belong was new to some people. A few people used team roles in their classroom already.

The Hot Potato activity worked out alright, and one person suggested that the group have quiet think time before anyone started writing first. Great idea! Also, some commented about what to do when one person was stuck. I agree that one person should try to find a reason for all four, and I was trying to demonstrate this strategy with an activity I usually use as an individualized warm-up.

I had the study team norms that students and I co-developed printed out on a hand-out so that I could discuss what stood out to me and hopefully what their students would also come up with. It also was a plug for Boaler's YouCubed site which offered the prompts. I also said that Ilana Horn's Strength in Numbers is one of the best books I've ready and they should definitely read it since they were interested in my session.

Sage and Scribe went well. I might re-arrange my slide order to slip in Fish Bowl in between here to break up the action of doing math. A great question was asked: "What if neither student knows the first step to solving an equation?" That reminded me that I strategically partner students so there are no low-low partnerships (ew I hate saying that). Also, if one person doesn't know, they switch roles rather quickly, but then eventually switch back for the next equation. I saw some great conversations. One person had another piece of constructive feedback about it but I forgot.

Everyone LOVED how I used the Google Drive app to take pictures of their work to display on the screen. It shows the 5 practices by selecting, sequencing, and connecting student work. The next time I present this I will have to do some sort of screen cast animation with my phone to show exactly how it's done (is that possible??).

No surprise, they loved the mystery student, or for them, the mystery teacher activity. 16 participants were born in California, and 8 were not so I said stay standing if you were born in California. Then narrowed it down to stay standing if you like oil paintings, and then staying standing if you like to teach Trigonometry. That worked well.

I didn't have time to have everyone respond to the learning log prompt. I did share the tip on printing out quarter sheets of paper that some were already familiar with.

I briefly discussed participation quizzes with a sample from my class earlier this week. I had no time to do the Red Light Green Light activity or share about the Fish Bowl.

I loved getting feedback from participants, but some of the conversations went on too long so I have to be careful about when I ask questions and make sure it's purposeful and doesn't slow me down to the point of not presenting all the material. I may cut out some of the material the next time I present it, which will be at the CPM National Conference in San Francisco. Thanks for reading, and especially anyone who did attend my session! To see around 24 or 25 out of 30 possible seats filled was awesome.

UPDATE: Here's the feedback I got from my sessions, unedited. I am posting it here for transparency and also so I don't have to login to their system to look at it again: