Using Instagram in the classroom #mathcrushmonday

I’m always trying to find new ways to connect with my students and encourage them in and out of the classroom. At the beginning of this year I decided to make a class instagram. At first I was a little unsure of the idea, but I knew that Instagram was this generations most used social media. Although they were a little mad that I wouldn’t follow them back my students loved that I had an instagram just for them! I use my Instagram to post pictures of students working together in class, fun activities, motivational memes, and their class and homework! I also let my students direct message me pictures of their homework if they have questions. This way I am able to see their work, and I get a notification on my phone right when they send it.

Today I decided to use Instagram another way. I want my students to be exposed to more than just the curriculum, so I decided to start #mathcrushmonday. When students walk in the door on Mondays my Instagram is up ready on the SmartBoard with a mathematician as my latest photo. Today my students saw Euclid on the board. For the first few minutes of class students looked up facts about Euclid and posted them in the comment section of the picture. I was constantly refreshing my Instagram page so the whole class could see as facts came through.

I think that this activity went really well. It’s a great relaxed way to start class on Monday, and students got to explore mathematicians they may have never heard of before. Today I chose Euclid because I teach three-sections of Geometry. I thought that it was important for my students to know where geometry came from.  Between each of my sections I deleted the facts from the class before so every section had the same experience.

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Constructions Using Geogebra

Today in geometry we started our constructions unit. I decided to gear away from paper and pencil straight edge and compass constructions and move towards doing construction on Geogebra. Using a new tool is always stressful especially for 14/15 year olds who already have the stress of starting high school. I decided that the best way to get them used to using Geogebra was by letting them play Euclid the Game. I worked through the tutorial and level 1 with all of the students and then let them start working through the levels by themselves. At first my students were aggravated that I wouldn’t tell them how to complete the constructions. I tell my students that this is called their “productive struggle”. Although aggravating they know that figuring it out themselves will help them be better learners. Some students passed levels faster than others, and as class went on students started working together and helping each other. It was awesome seeing how excited they were getting by doing constructions! Our class was an hour and a half today, so I usually give my students a five minute break to walk around and grab food or drinks. When I told them that we were having a break and then starting something else they said “NOOOOO! Can we keep doing this?!!” I was so happy that they loved the activity so much! It was definitely a great start to constructions.

After our break I passed out a foldable that had instructions on how to create constructions on Geogebra. I also gave them the link to a Youtube Channel that has videos on how to do constructions on Geogebra. For homework students have to practice copying segments and angles on Geogebra.

Overall great way to start constructions and introduce Geogebra!

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Math Office :)

So this year instead of having my own classroom I have all my things in my MATH OFFICE! The math department decided to put all of our desks in one room and then rotate classrooms to teach. I was slightly skeptical at first… not having my own room and moving so much could be stressful, but I actually LOVE IT! Our math office is huge and our desks have plenty of space. It also is great for collaboration. My desk is located in an ideal location. I have across from my mentor and next to the teacher who is also teaching geometry. I am constantly surrounded my resources. The setting also promotes productivity. It is also nice because students don’t come in the math office to “hang out”. They will come in to ask questions and that’s about it. Although I love my students it is nice to have a place that is separate. So far the math office is definitely a success!

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New job, new city, new life. First day of school

The past few months I graduated college, moved to Charlotte, and started my first real job… Hectic right?! So far I love the city and LOVE my job.   I am teaching Geometry and Algebra 1 (mostly freshman) at the Cannon School. I am teaching 4 sections and have 58 students.

The first day of school was super exciting and overwhelming. We had shorter classes and lots to get through. Before handing out the syllabus I decided to do a Kahoot with my students. It worked great!!! The Kahoot covered the main points of the syllabus and kept the students engaged the entire time. It was a great way to quickly review the syllabus, and get students talking to me and each other.

Over all successful first day 🙂