First Day Blogs, 2017-18 #MTBoS

Blog posts appear in the order they were submitted. 

From the archives! Collections of blog posts about first days from past years.


MTBoS SunFun Logo

Our topic for next week is, “Classroom Management”

Due: Sunday, August 20th, 6AM

Recently, Fawn wrote a post on Classroom Management that I really enjoyed.  As Fawn pointed out, Michael is right, we don’t talk enough about this!  Because sometimes, we do pick the right task, and are doing the right things, when something goes wrong.  How do you handle that?  What are your policies that help your class run smoothly?  What are your go-tos?  How do we engage the student that doesn’t like our class, or is disrespectful?  When do we contact parents and what do we say to them?  What resources have helped you that others could turn to?  I’ve been teaching for many years and this is still hard for me.  So, let’s write this week for each other, and especially for the new teachers out there.  Because this is a topic that is not often covered enough, especially in a positive way!

Helpful tips:

  • Submit your blog post (below) by Sunday at 6AM to have your post included in the weekly summary.
  • Tweet out your post!  Use the hashtags #MTBoS (Math Twitter Blogosphere)*, and #SundayFunday to get more traffic to your post.  This is especially important if you are new to tweeting because only your followers will see your tweets unless you include a hashtag.
  • Additional Hashtags:  Of course you can always add more hashtags to your Tweet so more people will be exposed to your post!  You can search any keywords to find a hashtag, and here are some of the more popular ones:
    • #ElemMathChat (Elementary Teachers)
    • #MSmathChat (Middle School Teachers)
    • #GeomChat (Geometry)
    • #Alg1Chat (Alg1 Teachers)
    • #Alg2Chat (Alg2 Teachers)
    • #PreCalcChat (PreCalc and Calc)
    • #MathChat
  • JUST  #PushSend!  🙂

Submit your post using the form below by Saturday at midnight! Just #PressSend

You can also click here to submit.

New to Blogging?

If you are like, “Wow!  This sounds like so much fun!  I want to blog but don’t know where to start!” then you must read “Mission 1: The Power of the Blog” on the Explore the MTBoS site.

** The hardest thing to do week after week is come up with great prompts.  Please help us out by telling us what you would like to blog about (or even read about) here!

* The Math Twitters Blogosphere is not an organization.  Rather it refers to ANYONE that is involved in MATH in ANY way!  You do NOT have to Tweet or have a blog!  But, you can find many teachers that do tweet and blog by searching the hashtag #MTBoS on Twitter.  All are welcome, no invitation necessary!  Please join in the conversation!  Just #PushSend!  

Thanks so very much to @DruinOK for getting this all started and Jessica,  @Algebrainiac1, for creating our awesome logo!

SaveSave

First Day 2017-18

The FIRST DAY is SO EXCITING!  Even though I am not ready to go back to school yet (I still have so much I wanted to get done and …. SUMMER), I love thinking about the first day back.  I can’t wait to actually meet and interact with the amazing young learners that I will get to work with this year.  Their enthusiasm for learning is at a high the first days of school and I am excited to harness that and turn it into amazing math!

I do not go over my course guidelines the first day.  I would rather spend that day getting to know my kids, having them get to know each other, and playing with math!  I have found that it is better to go over one guideline every day or so in the first few weeks, as they naturally come up.  I usually say, “Refer to this place in your syllabus.” in response to a student question.  This reminds students that the syllabus taped in their notebooks is a great place to look for important information that they may need.

Sarah Vanderwerf is a thoughtful educator and you should definitely follow her blog if you don’t already.  Basically my entire first day is coming from her!  Last year I did Sarah’s name tents and I loved them!  I think my students liked them as well because later in the year I learned that some students had shared part of their name tent on Snapchat.  I also noticed some of them kept their name tents in their notebooks.  Even though replying to name tents took a lot of work the first week, getting to know each of my students better was worth it, especially if they appreciated it as well.  I also did Sarah’s 100’s Task later in the week last year.  But I loved it so much I am doing it on the first day this year!

Our first day has very short class periods, only 25 minutes long, so I don’t have time for much. We still have almost two weeks until school starts so my first day plans aren’t firmed up completely yet, but this is what I am thinking.

  • Greet students at the door with a Hi-Five and instruct them to look for their seat.
  • I always have a seating chart the first day to help ease student anxiety.  I will have their names on their tables and may even project it.
  • Name tents will be waiting at their tables to give them something to start on before class starts.  I am a die hard “bell to bell” teacher and there is no better time to start this than the first day! I will have an example name tent for them on each table.
  • Display what they need for my class this year and briefly talk about it while they finish their name tents.
  • Have student introduce themselves to the other students at their table.
  • Have each student write down their favorite movie, ice cream, and vacation spot.  Then each table group compares answers to determine the favorite move, ice cream and vacation spot of the group.  After they finish, they will share their group answers with the class.  We did this in our CPM training and it was a fun and low stress ice breaker activity.  (I may not have time for this, and may have to push it to day 2).  I will pass out textbooks during this time.
  • 100’s Task!  I will take pics of the action!
  • Discuss 100’s Task and share the pics I took to show them what great group work looks like! I’m not sure how I will record this yet.  I will either write it on the white board or type their responses into a google doc so I can print it out and share it with them.  (I may do this on day 2 so I have time for the ice breaker above).
  • Closing. I’m terrible at class closure.  I’m going to set a 5 minute timer on my watch so I can remind myself daily to close the lesson.  Not sure what this looks like yet. They will need to clean up their tables and turn in their name tents.  I don’t know if I will have time for an additional closing activity!  This may just be a time for me to say goodbye and have a great day!

Last Year Was ROUGH, But I’m Back #MTBoS

Over the summer, once school is out and my week of catching up on sleep is over, I get inspired.  Last summer I decided it was finally time to remodel my house.  The planning begin in August, we moved out in November (right before Thanksgiving), orchestrated a whole house remodel throughout the spring, and moved back in June, just one weekend after school ended.  It was insane.  I was also granted the Desmos Fellowship last year and flew to San Fransisco for an amazing long weekend in November.  During my Desmos weekend, one week before we were set to move, the house we were going to rent fell through.  So I spent part of my Desmos weekend in panic mode trying to help my husband pick out a new rental home.

Last year I didn’t tweet much, I blogged even less.  I tried to start up #Alg2Chat in the fall, but could not maintain it.  I merely survived, and barely at that.  I love blogging, and I missed it dearly last year.  But, I simply didn’t have the extra time to give, I didn’t have time for me.

I gave everything I had to my family and supporting my students, but I did not have much left.  I felt terrible about losing so many of my connections last year, about failing.  Thankfully, I was able to attend #TMC17 and reconnect with many of my close, albeit long lost, friends.  I apologized to many of them for my lack of connection this year.  “I’m sorry.” I said to all, “This has been a rough year for me.  I don’t know why, but it just has.”  It was when I said this to Tina Cardone that everything changed.  She reminded me that the election happened this year, and that many of us have had a devastating year, and were having a tough time recovering.  What Tina said rang true for me.  Yes, I had been extra busy this year, but above that, this year was very rough for a singular reason.  The election profoundly affected many of my close friends and students.  I was busy being there for my upset friends and terrified students.  I had a Muslim student who returned to Kuwait in December.  I was obsessed with news stories and got into battles with family and “friends” on social media.  I felt lost, I was confused.  My heart was broken.  I needed time to be there for my students and friends more than ever before.  I needed time to recover.

So if YOU had a really rough time this year, consider all of the extenuating circumstances that we were barraged with this year that we have not ever had to deal with.  Do not let anyone tell you are not good enough, or need to do better because you were too overwhelmed to keep up with some of the things you used to do and still love.  Surround yourself with people who understand this.  People who will TELL you this when you didn’t even realize it.  This year many of us were in survival mode.  Time has given much of my heart back, and I am more determined than ever to help people, and make a difference.  But I needed that time to heal.  And I am glad that I took it.  And I’m glad you did too.  Welcome back.

Start a #Teach180 Blog

A couple of years ago I had a 180 blog.  If you haven’t heard of this, you should check out #Teach180, because it is fascinating! I really enjoyed doing it and was considering doing it again for the upcoming year.  But I was unsure, because I get busy and sometimes would forget days.  Then I saw this tweet from Sarah, (who actually started this hashtag!):

Screen Shot 2017-08-04 at 6.08.09 PM

“I frequently miss a day.  NO BIGGIE.”  Sarah’s tweet took away the guilt.  If I miss a day, or two or three, it is OK!  No more teacher guilt.  So I have decided that I AM going to do it again this year!

#teach180If you are thinking about it, I would say definitely say, “Go for it!”.  I made it super low maintenance by creating a new blog (see below for how I did it).  Some teachers just tweet a picture or post a picture to Instagram.  Some people use IFFF to post to Twitter, but you are also able to just connect the two if you allow Instagram to connect to your Twitter account.

I loved capturing students doing awesome math every day.  The students loved being photographed and seeing pictures of themselves.  I shared the 180 blog website with my parents at parent night.  The pictures I took everyday were a great reminder of things that I wanted to blog about later.  I also loved having a visual record of my year.  The next year, the blog was a visual reminder of the interesting activities I did not want to forget about (like Kate’s Graphles to Graphles Game).

Screen Shot 2017-08-07 at 5.51.52 PM

This is how I ran my 180 blog.  But there is no perfect way!  Just do it!

  • I just took one pic a day, not per class.  If I took multiple pictures that day, I would picstitch them together so I could make “one” post.  However, this year I am going to be less strict.  If I take multiple pics, I will do multiple posts.
  • I started a NEW WordPress.com site and picked a free photo theme!  That was really fun as the photo themes are so different than my regular blog.
  • I downloaded the WordPress app to my phone so it was truly effortless to post each day.
  • I added the categories #Teach180, #Alg2Chat, and #MTBoS to the blog settings.  So each time I posted to the blog, I could easily click on those catagories.
  • I connected the blog to my Twitter account.  Last time, I included  #Teach180 and #Alg2Chat to the TITLE of each blog post.  Each time I published a post, WordPress would tweet out the title, and my desired hashtags were automatically included.Screen Shot 2017-08-09 at 7.57.27 PM
  • THIS year, I am using IFTTT (If Then Then That) to automatically tweet every blog post and attach the #Teach180 #Alg2Chat and #MTBoS hashtags.  I had to create my own applet.  Here is what it looked like when finished.Screen Shot 2017-08-13 at 12.42.21 PM
  • You may have to get permission from your school / parents.  We have our students sign an extra form each year. 

I would LOVE to see your 180 blogs, or any great ideas that you have.  So please, post the link to your 180 blog in the comments!

SaveSave

A Collection of Goals from Across the #MTBoS, 2017-18

Wow! I am blown away by all of the blog posts this week!  We had almost 50 posts!
Blog posts appear in the order they were submitted. 


MTBoS SunFun Logo

Our topic for next week is, “First Day Plans”

Due: Sunday, August 13th, 6AM

Helpful tips:

  • Submit your blog post (below) by Sunday at 6AM to have your post included in the weekly summary.
  • Tweet out your post!  Use the hashtags #MTBoS (Math Twitter Blogosphere)*, #PushSend and #SundayFunday to get more traffic to your post.  This is especially important if you are new to tweeting because only your followers will see your tweets unless you include a hashtag.
  • Additional Hashtags:  Of course you can always add more hashtags to your Tweet so more people will be exposed to your post!  You can search any keywords to find a hashtag, and here are some of the more popular ones:
    • #ElemMathChat (Elementary Teachers)
    • #MSmathChat (Middle School Teachers)
    • #GeomChat (Geometry)
    • #Alg1Chat
    • #Alg2Chat (Alg2 Teachers)
    • #PreCalcChat
    • #MathChat
  • JUST  #PushSend!  🙂

Submit your post using the form below by Saturday at midnight! Just #PressSend

You can also click here to submit.

New to Blogging?

If you are like, “Wow!  This sounds like so much fun!  I want to blog but don’t know where to start!” then you must read “Mission 1: The Power of the Blog” on the Explore the MTBoS site.

** The hardest thing to do week after week is come up with great prompts.  Please help us out by telling us what you would like to blog about (or even read about) here!

* The Math Twitters Blogosphere is not an organization.  Rather it refers to ANYONE that is involved in MATH in ANY way!  You do NOT have to Tweet or have a blog!  But, you can find many teachers that do tweet and blog by searching the hashtag #MTBoS on Twitter.  All are welcome, no invitation necessary!  Please join in the conversation!  Just #PushSend!  

Thanks so very much to @DruinOK for getting this all started and Jessica,  @Algebrainiac1, for creating our awesome logo!

SaveSave

ALL of the TMC (Twitter Math Camp) Songs

Since TMC (Twitter Math Camp) IS camp, of course we have a camp song every year!  (Unless Sean skips TMC – no pressure here Sean, but never forget that the one year you DIDN’T come, we didn’t have a song.  And I promise that Rachel, Dave, and I tried so hard!)

Every year while at TMC, we go furiously searching for the words to each and every song so we can sing them together, at game night, in the car, in the hotel lobby, because that is also what you do at camp – you sing everywhere you go!

So, here is a compilation of all of the amazing TMC songs!  Special thanks to Sean, Rachel, Dave and Tina who always make it happen every year!

Short and Sweet!  Some of the MP3 files here:

#TMC12 – “Tweet Me Maybe”

Sung to the tune of “Call Me Maybe”

I sat alone in my class,
Hoping my students would pass,
Prepping was kicking my ass
But help was on the way

I started searching the net,
To find a way to connect
Found teachers I’d never met
and I was on my way

Dan’s blog was poppin’,
G-Reader, feed not stoppin’
Each day, I would drop-in
Guess it’s time for hop in!

Hey, I just found you, And this is crazy,
But here’s my ID, So tweet me, maybe?

It’s hard to reach out, Please don’t flame me,
But here’s my ID, So tweet me, maybe?

Hey, I just found you, And this is crazy
But here’s my ID, So tweet me, maybe?

It’s hard to reach out, Please don’t flame me,
But here’s my ID, So tweet me, maybe?

Oh holy crap can it be,
Nowak responded to me,
Blogging math celebrity,
She’s twitter royalty

I beg, and borrow and steal
No reinventing the wheel,
What are these urges I feel?
Nerdy math sex appeal

Hal-lo-ween was awesome
Dull worksheets, I could toss ‘em
My, i-deas could blossom

Now it’s time for Math Camp, baby!

Hey, I just met you, all in person.
Twitter Math Camp, this was the first one

It’s hard to teach right, in i-so-laaaaaation,
So here’s some PD, just like va-ca-tion

Hey, I just met you, all in person.
Twitter Math Camp, this was the first one
It’s hard to teach right, in i-so-laaaaaaation,
So here’s some PD, just like va-ca-tion

Before I came onto your sites,
I must’ve taught so bad,
I must’ve taught so bad,
I must’ve taught so so bad

Before I came onto your sites
I must’ve taught so bad
and you should know that
It was so, so sad

I loved free pizza, and the brew-ry.
You know my ID, So tweet me, maybe?

Ci-ty Muse-um, or the Card’s game,
So tweet me sometime, I won’t be too lame

So, thank you Shelli, thank you Li-sa.
Don’t want to go home – so glad to meet ya

Now that it’s coming to an end
we’ll miss you so bad
we’ll miss you so bad
we’ll miss you so, so bad

Before you came into our lives
We must’ve taught so bad
And you should know that.

So tweet me, maybe?

Video:

#TMC13 – Tic-Toc TMC13

Wake up in the morning draggin’ both my feet
Up all night, planning for classes, did I even sleep?
Before I leave, brush my teeth with a bottle of….. *soda*
Cause when I’m done for the week, I’ll still be in a coma

(I’m so) Tired of bandanas on dogs, dogs
Looking for a lesson ’bout logs, logs
(So I’m) checking out all your blogs, blogs

(and now) I feel like I’m gettin’ less bitter
Then my heart starts to flitter
(When I) read about a conference on twitter

Math camp, getting amped
Maybe I’ll meet Fawn and Sam
We’ll do math, share some laughs
And improve our teaching craft
(All) weekend, meeting friends
Makin’ T-M-C trend, like
(Whoa-oh oh oh)

Math camp, getting amped
Hashtag #needaredstamp
We’ll do math, share some laughs
And improve our teaching craft
(All) weekend, meeting friends
Makin’ T-M-C trend, like
(Whoa-oh oh oh)

Ain’t got a care in the world, as I get on the plane
In-fin-ite tangents on my iPod, I’ve got math on the brain
And now, the tweeps are showing up, dropping trivia knowledge
Learning more here in four days, than in four years of college

(I’m talking about) tweets blowin up our phones, phones
High priest-ess on her throne, throne
(Mathalicious in our) romance cone, cone

(Now) Michael Pershan doing Jay-Z
Nathan gettin’ cra-zy
Food truck foods don’t phase me
(Admittedly, that last line was lazy)

Math camp, now we’re amped
Rooms of swooning Desmos fans
(We’ll) do math, share some laughs
And improve our teaching craft
(All) weekend, meeting friends
Makin’ T-M-C trend, like
(Whoa-oh oh oh)
(Ro-ro-ro-ro cone)

Math camp, now we’re amped
Stealing all your lesson plans
(We’ll) do math, share some laughs
And improve our teaching craft
(All) weekend, meeting friends
Makin’ T-M-C trend, like
(Whoa-oh oh oh)

O-ri-ga-mi
Kar-ee-oke
Piano duels
It was all cool

Lisa, Shelli
Max, Anthony
James and Jessie
How we thank you

We listen now
We notice now
We wonder now
And you showed us

Listen, shut up
Listen, shut up
Listen, shut up

(Sam!!) Twitter math camp don’t start ’til I walk in

Math camp, still so amped
But hey, where the hell is Dan?
(We) Did maths, shared some laughs
And improved our teaching craft
(All) weekend, meeting friends
Makin’ T-M-C trend, like
(Whoa-oh oh oh)

Math camp, we got amped
Lisa Henry is our champ
(We) Did math, shared some laughs
And improved our teaching craft
(all) weekend, met our friends
Wish it all would never end, oh
(No oh oh oh)

#TMC14:  No Sean = No Song 😞

#TMC15 –  “Party at the TMC”

Party at the TMC mp3

I hopped off the plane at L.A.X.
Because I didn’t realize there was a closer airport
Welcome to the land of awesome tweeps (whoa),
Am I gonna fit in?

Jumped in the car,
Here we are for the fourth time
(beat) Look to my right and I see the Harvey Mudd Sign
This is all so crazy
Everybody seems so famous

My phone is buzzin’ with the fav-rites and the retweets
So much excitement and I’m nervous,
That’s when Lisa turned on the microphone
And then TMC was on
And then TMC was on
And then TMC was on

[Chorus:]
So I put my hands up
I’m giving high fives
The MTBoS is here to stay
We’re starting on time like yeah
Movin’ our thumbs like yeah
We got our phones out,
We’re tweeting along,
There’s awesome packed in every day
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play

Get to Friday gonna share my fav
Everybody’s tweeting at me now
Like, “Who’s that chick that 3D prints?”
I gotta go and track her down.
(beat) Sooo hard to choose, why can’t I pick three?
It’s definitely not like normal PD

‘Cause all I see are teaching pro-s
Sha-kin’ it in front of two pianos
My tummy’s rumbling’ and I gotta pick a food TRUCK
Gonna count the times that fawn will say f…. whoa whoa whoa! -something incredibly heartfelt that makes us all feel very emotional-
That’s when Chris Shore dropped and did the worm
And then Fawn put a wig on
And then Fawn put a wig on
And then Matt put a wig on

So we put our hands up
We’re two hundred strong
And growing bigger ev’ry day
Bar-be-que-ing like yeah
Nixing the tricks like yea
Now look at these pics
Which doesn’t belong?
There’s awesome packed in every day
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play

Soon I’m hoppin’ on my flight (on my fllight)
Wish I’d won The Price Is Right (Price is Right)
Hard to leave you every time (every time)
But then I’ll just log on and I’ll feel alright

So we put our hands up
We’re waving goodbye
We’re sad to all go away:
Courtyard chil-ling like yeah
Raf-fle-ing stuff like yeah
We found what we love,
We’re doing that now,
And did it for the last four days
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play
Yeah, twitter math camp where your work is play

#TMC15 – Party in the TMC Video:

Slideshow to accompany Party at the TMC!

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 6.59.54 PM

#TMC16 – TMC Party Rock Anthem

Sung to the tune of Party Rock Anthem

Party Anthem mp3 

T-M-C in Minn-e-a-po-lis
(Hope) everybody’s gonna have a good trip
I hope that I can get a pic,
With Dan Meyer’s built-in self-ie stick

T-M-C is in the house today(oh)
Where math teachers come to learn and play (Varsity math baby!)
Desmos features gonna make you say: (yeah)
We just wanna see you…
Graph that!
Boop boop boop boop boop-boo-boop boop-boo-boop boop boop boop

In the dorms playing games, all so different,
yet we’re all the same, learning non-stop so glad I came
Basking in the glow of all the this twitter fame
G-I-Fs from the J-L-V
Twins hat, math stickers and our clever T’s
Half vets half newbs, pizza please
But which session, David Wees?

Yo!
I’m lovin’ all these sessions, never restin’
Got that math teacher swag, wanna brag ‘bout this profession
T-M-C, yeah! Now I got a confession
Yo don’t hate, let’s be straight: I’m just here to steal your lessons
(Yeah!)

The Blue Tape Lounge will make you want to stay (whoa)
Sam’s explore math blew us all away (yeah)
Minnehaha hike to end your day
Grab your team for trivia, let’s play (Let’s go)

T-M-C is in the house today (oh)
Where math teachers come to learn and play (Expand MTBoS baby!)
Desmos features gonna make you say: (yeah)
We just wanna see you…
sort that!

Step up fast, backwards bike gonna make you bust your ass
Math tans’ song from Sister Act, now stop – check this map
Choose the 10 percent (You’re gonna change)
Practice with intent (says Dylan Kane)
We just wanna see (You’re trending now)
All your blogs and tweets (You’re MTBoS now)
Tesselate, math debate, contemplate then calculate [4x]

T-M-C is going to end today
Where math teachers came to learn and play (Face your fears, baby!)
Desmos features gonna make you say: (yeah)
We just wanna see you…
Math that!

#TMC16 Party Anthem Video

#TMC17 – TMC17 Magic

sung to the tune “24K Magic”

Tuesday
Start off with the Desmos precon
Geometry and CL
Let’s set T-M-C off right

Put yo’ first year buttons to the moon
What session y’all trying to do?
TMC sev-en-teen in ATL
Grass roots PD done well

It’s time for airplanes (shuttle trains)
User names (Blog fame)
Guess who’s back again?
And if you’re new (Go on pin em)
And if you’re shy (Go on pin em)
Feeling welcome soon as you walk in (we hope)

Wearing Nerdy clothes (ya)
some desmos toes
And crazy cool math tattoos (whoop, whoop)
Don’t wait too long might burn ya’self.
Eat dinner with everyone new.

Grace Chen, She’s an eloquent one with some truth bombs in her pocket (keep up)
So many great ideas to write down, but I gotta find a socket (charge up)
Speed date, make some friends, with some tweeps that I’ve been stalkin’(meet up)

Put your Intro-vert pins to the moon
Girl, what way you spinnin’?
TMC seven-teen in ATL
Come on ring Sam’s Bell

Second verse for the holy (holy) innocents (innocents)
Daniel F, working hard, runnin’ ‘round
Can I blog?(uh huh) Can I tweet?(uh huh)
Gotta show ‘em how teachers get down

First have your coffee(coffee), move your body(body)
Sing little mermaid in the middle of the lobby (whoop whoop)
Make us trend- Let’s all listen to Ca-rl – Just #PushSend

He’s from a dangerous land, and he’s teaching bout the SQWIGLES
So many really funny moments, even fractions makes us giggle
Buy a house, Play with math, Now we’re eating at the pickle

Make a, pinky, promise, to the room
How many cubes? That worm is 22
TMC seven-teen in ATL
Take over the hotel

Everywhere we go we be like (Oooh, Let’s trade shirts!)
Everywhere we go we be like (Ooooh Let’s trade books!)
Oh everywhere we go they be like (Please stop singing)

————- watch me #push send like
Twitter Math ca-amp, trending #1
Waffle house (cheesy eggs, smothered covered diced hashbrowns – rockstar!)
Crochet now!
How old’s that selfie? How old’s that selfie(selfie)
Let’s play some games. 10 minute rain.
Put your first year buttons to the moon
Can we get sleep soon?
TMC seven-teen in ATL
Grass roots PD done well

Make a, pinky promise, to the room
Tweet #1TMCthing soon.
TMC say goodbye to A-aaatlaaantaa
SEND SAM A BANANA!!!

Slideshow for TMC Magic

Screen Shot 2017-08-02 at 7.02.28 PM

** More MP3’s and slideshows are coming as I find them!

I Use Worksheets & WE ARE GOOD ENOUGH!

I was going to title this “We ALL Use Worksheets!” because I think that we all probably do.  But then I didn’t want to speak for ALL of the math teachers everywhere.  But really, do we?

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this amazing online community of math teachers that I follow.  #MTBoS!!  I read their material and am often just blown away.  I read about problem based learning and project based learning and standards based grading and rich tasks and problem solving and debate and ALL OF THE THINGS.  I even read about teachers creating an entire Calculus curriculum, from scratch.  And I’m like, “Wow, I suck.”  So I steal and steal and steal.  And through all of this reading and stealing, I am inspired to work hard to create a lesson that is not only fun, but possibly educational.  And then I blog it, so I can give back.

And that is it.  I don’t blog my sucky days, obviously!  Just like I post on the rest of social media, I blog my highlights.  And even though I try really hard to make each day an amazing and engaging experience for my students, I do not do SEXY activities like Barbie Bungee or Catapult Quadratics every day.  So thank you Kate for posting  “In Defense of Unsexy”.  Because so many of my days are unsexy.

Next year we are adopting CPM.  It is a curriculum.  I have never used a math “textbook” I loved or wanted to follow each day, and I have never had an actual “curriculum”.  But when I saw that many of the CPM lessons were actually lessons I had used in the past (most often from bloggers), I was excited!  But at the same time, I felt guilty.  I felt that I was not enough if I was using a curriculum that I basically followed every day.  I felt that I was not an awesome math teacher if I was not creating (or stealing from the #MTBoS) crazy interesting lessons as much as possible.

Then a few awesome things happened to show me that I was wrong.  In my Rich Tasks morning session at TMC (Twitter Math Camp), we spent a morning analyzing how we could change a worksheet into a rich task.  Or how we could even change an existing worksheet into a rich task simply with implementation (I plan to blog about this later).  Then Peg Cagle spoke about how incredibly difficult writing curriculum was. And that there are many, many great series out there that are research based, teacher created, and teacher/student tested that teachers could use (and some were even free).  So if we are able to use one of those we should!  (And if not, we could use the lessons as a resource.)

Our TMC Keynote speaker Carl inspired us to all just #pushsend.  Many people started tweeting some variation of, “You are enough”.

Finally Sean talked about using worksheets in his Marbleslides talk.  Once home, I read Kate’s “Unsexy” post and then the expert below, from the blog of a true newbie.  Taylor will be a first year teacher this year.  Even though she has never taught (other than student teaching) she was brave enough to come to TMC.  And she was brave enough to write this.

IMG_1398.PNG

And, the magic lives on since.

Screen Shot 2017-08-01 at 6.18.32 PMSince incorporating as many math teachers the #MTBoS as possible is such a giant part of my life, I am having a tough time understanding the feelings of exclusion.  I am trying.  But maybe this is a big part of it.  WE ARE ALL GOOD ENOUGH.  We are teachers for goodness sake.  We are MATH teachers, who chose to be here because we want to teach math to kids.  We are all trying our hardest.  We are working hard to get better everyday.  It is ok most days are unsexy.  In fact, it is great.

WE ARE ALL GOOD ENOUGH.

Love,

Unsexy Julie

Let’s Blog Together! Sunday Funday is Back!

MTBoS SunFun Logo

Blogging is something wonderful that you can do for yourself.  I’m not a great writer and grammar mystifies me.  But that is OK, I write for myself.  I write to brainstorm, to reflect, to hold myself accountable, and especially to remember my past lessons for future years!  When I first started blogging, no one read it, few if any commented.  And that was ok, even better at first, because I didn’t have to worry about an audience.  It was almost like a diary, and it was freeing.  I was writing for me.  

This past year has been tough.  I tweeted much less, I rarely blogged.  And I missed it.  In fact, maybe NOT blogging contributed to this being a tough year?  Blogging takes time, and I didn’t TAKE time for me.  I didn’t MAKE time for me.  I need some ME time.

Carl Oliver gave a keynote, Hitting the Darn ‘Send’ Button at TMC (Twitter Math Camp) last week where he encouraged everyone who is a current tweeter/blogger or is interested in tweeting or blogging to “Just #PushSend“.  All of this talk about blogging inspired me.  And then everything changed with this one tweet from Shelli.

Screen Shot 2017-07-31 at 9.43.37 PM

MS/HS SunFun was a blogging initiative that existed a few years back.  It was fun, and inspiring, but especially helpful to have a weekly prompt!  So YES, it was an amazing idea, and once Shelli suggested it we jumped right on it!  Thankfully Jessica also got all excited and whipped up a logo (actually multiple logos like a logo savant).  We pulled Sam in for logo design suggestions and were soon on our way!

Have you never blogged before?  Are you afraid to blog? ME TOO! Blogging can be scary for everyone.  It can even be tough for long time bloggers to #PushSend.  But blogging has done so much for ME, and I want to help bring that to YOU.   Please know that you are good enough, and that you deserve it.  You should blog for YOU.  Just #PushSend“.

If you would like to blog, but have a hard time coming up with ideas, join us for Sunday Funday blogging!   “Sunday Funday Blogging” is for ALL math peeps out there, elementary, middle school, or high school teachers, math professors, math coaches, math ed students, and anyone that just wants to blog about math!  There will be a new prompt each week!  “Just #PushSend“.

Our topic for this week is, “First Day Plans”

Due: Sunday, August 13th, 6AM

Helpful tips:

  • Submit your blog post (below) by Sunday at 6AM to have your post included in the weekly summary.
  • Tweet out your post!  Use the hashtags #MTBoS (Math Twitter Blogosphere)*, #PushSend and #SundayFunday to get more traffic to your post.  This is especially important if you are new to tweeting because only your followers will see your tweets unless you include a hashtag.
  • Additional Hashtags:  Of course you can always add more hashtags to your Tweet so more people will be exposed to your post!  You can search any keywords to find a hashtag, and here are some of the more popular ones:
    • #ElemMathChat (Elementary Teachers)
    • #MSmathChat (Middle School Teachers)
    • #GeomChat (Geometry)
    • #Alg1Chat
    • #Alg2Chat (Alg2 Teachers)
    • #PreCalcChat
    • #MathChat
  • JUST  #PushSend!  🙂

Submit your post using the form below by Saturday at midnight! Just #PressSend

You can also click here to submit.

New to Blogging?

If you are like, “Wow!  This sounds like so much fun!  I want to blog but don’t know where to start!” then you must read “Mission 1: The Power of the Blog” on the Explore the MTBoS site.

** The hardest thing to do week after week is come up with great prompts.  Please help us out by telling us what you would like to blog about (or even read about) here!

THANK YOU to Shelli, Jessica, Sam, and everyone else that jumped on that thread to help today!

Archive of MS Sunday Funday’s of the past

* The Math Twitters Blogosphere is not an organization.  Rather it refers to ANYONE that is involved in MATH in ANY way!  You do NOT have to Tweet or have a blog!  But, you can find many teachers that do tweet and blog by searching the hashtag #MTBoS on Twitter.  All are welcome, no invitation necessary!  Please join in the conversation!  Just #PushSend!  

Thanks so very much to Jessica,  @Algebrainiac1, for creating our awesome logo!

Calling All Algebra 2 Teachers! #MTBoS #Alg2Chat

TMC16 this year intensely motivated me, to the point where I cannot stop thinking about math ed, even on vacation!  I came up with this idea this morning, and have to get it down before I go to the beach so I will stop thinking about it, and relax!

If you are going to be teaching Algebra 2, please add yourself to the list below!  I did this when I taught middle school, and it was great!  I even was able to develop a monthly newsletter of resources for those who signed up.  No promises, I have much ambition before school starts and then run out of time. But for the first time in two years, I am feeling my old momentum come swinging back!  Hurrah! And thank you all for inspiring me!

I created a shared Google Folder for us to drop our favorite goodies in.  How great will it be to have a place with ALL THE THINGS when we are looking for resources?!  As a community, I know we can do this!

Julie, @jreulbach

PLEASE add the #Alg2Chat to any Algebra 2 post you tweet about.  🙂  Let’s bring this back!

Experience (or Re-live) #TMC16, Virtually

The #MTBoS (Math Twitter Blogosphere) is an amazing community of math educators who share ideas and resources freely with others through blogs and Twitter. It is a strong online community where we are constantly learning from one another and growing better, together.

tmc

Twitter Math Camp 2012

 Twitter Math Camp (TMC), an amazing “grass roots” conference for teachers, by teachers, was born when we decided to finally meet in person five years ago in 2012. This initial small meeting of 37 teachers (#TMC12) has grown to a conference of over 200 in just five short years. I have been to all five, as it is the one conference that I do not miss, and it is one of my favorite experiences of the year!

Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 7.43.15 PMI love Twitter Math Camp so much that I want to share it with everyone. And I want you to get to experience it, even if you couldn’t be there this year to experience it with me! Luckily, it is TWITTER Math Camp, so almost everything can be accessed online!
Here is your how to guide to virtually “attending” TMC16 online. The best thing is, you don’t have to decide which amazing session to attend (out of 12!) during each block, you get to read about them all! In fact, I will be virtually attending all 11 sessions every block that I did not get to attend because I was in a different session!

1) Search the #TMC16 hashtag on Twitter and read the tweets. You will find amazing quotes, pictures, and most importantly links to many of the great resources presented at the conference.  Note: There are a ton of tweets so it will take a while to read through. In fact, there were so many tweets that #TMC16 was trending multiple times per day during the three-day conference. Additionally, since it is a Twitter conference, the teachers are constantly communicating with each other through Twitter, all using the #TMC16 hashtag. So you will see many tweets that are not resources as well.

2) Go to the Twitter Math Camp website. Here you can read more about Twitter Math Camp. After that, I would read the TMC16 Complete Program with Descriptions so you will know what sessions you want to learn all about.   There are a ton of sessions so take notes! You will need them when you access the TMC Wiki to get the session materials (see #3). The Twitter Math Camp website will also contain the #TMC16 Archive, which is all of the videos recorded of the conference as well as many reflection blog posts by other teachers about the conference. Many math educators blog about their experience. These blog posts are excellent as several teachers will give specifics and details about each session to supplement the raw materials that you can find.

3)  Watch the videos from #TMC16. (They are all not up yet, but will be).  The keynote speakers and the “My Favorites” were recorded each day, plus a few extraneous moments. “My Favorites” are 5 – 15 minute mini-talks teachers give about a favorite thing from their classroom. The “official” videos were taken by Glenn Waddell.  You can also watch the  videos I took with Periscope. Periscope is fun because viewers can heart moments they love and write comments, all of which you can view when watching the replay of the video. I discovered that I could sketch on the video while people were talking! So, I had some fun with that too. I am working to put all of the videos in one place permanently, but haven’t had time yet. Also, I had never used Periscope before this conference, so my first videos are untitled and the orientation is vertical. Sorry! Thank you to Sam for showing me Scopedown so I could download all of my Periscopes before they disappeared!  However, for some reason the orientation is all messed up when I downloaded it.  Ugh.

4)  Check out the Twitter Math Camp Wiki for the resources! The TMC wiki contains most of the materials from each of the sessions. It is packed with links, pdfs, and sometimes even the presenter slides! Bonus: It also contains all of the information from every Twitter Math Camp session since it was created in 2012. Be patient, as some presenters have not had a chance to upload their files. You can also tweet a presenter and I am sure they would be happy to send material to you.

FINALLY, once you are all done “attending” TMC16, you should share your #1TMCThing on Twitter. This is the ONE thing that you learned from TMC that you would like to implement this year. Please tweet it out, and don’t be shy! Think of TMC16 as an online school. You have earned your virtual certificate and should definitely tweet along with us. Because you are one of us. If you are still not convinced, here is Shelli’s tweet. She was not able to attend TMC this year, but followed the hashtag during while TMC16 was in session.  She even discovered and shared her #1tmcThing. Missed you Shelli. ❤

Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 2.32.23 PM

Going forward, if you are NOT on Twitter, interacting with math educators, you should be. So sign up now before you miss any more of the amazing things math educators are doing there! I’ve grown more in the past few years than I have in my entire career. If you want to meet more of us, the MTBoS directory is a great place to start! Follow people on Twitter. Follow @TMathC. Follow me at @jreulbach. Say Hi to me!  Ask questions!  We will help you!  Search hashtags and use hashtags when you tweet. It will be life changing.

Some hashtags I frequently use:

#MTBoS – Talk to the math educator community

#alg2chat – Algebra teachers (alright, so right now this is mostly me – but I’m not going to quit trying to make it happen!)

#msmathchat – Middle School Math Teachers

#tmc16 – Everything TMC16