Friday, January 31, 2014
Day 92: Drained
I cherish the conversations and questions that come out my geometry class. While going over orthocenter and centroid today, students began asking questions about proportional area and whether or not those points would be the same on polygons other than triangles. We did an informal proof about whether the area of the two triangles created by the median were of the same area. The inquisitiveness and willingness to explore that some of my students possess fills me with a sense of longing for all that we could do if we only had the time.
I was SUPER excited about their homework assignment and MAY have rushed through the lesson a bit fast so that I could give it to them.
M: Yes it is. "I don't know what you're talking about."
S: "The one where you and a friend have two jobs and you need to find a place to live that's halfway between."
M: "Yes! Except this time, since you're living in LA and it's more expensive, you need two roommates. The locations at the bottom of the paper are where the three of you work. Find the intersection where the three of you should get an apartment so that you are all the same distance from work."
It was homework, but most of them worked on it, and finished it, in class. Several students thought the map was too cluttered so they found the points, transferred them to the back of the paper and found the circumcenter that way. I should have made them justify to me why the circumcenter would be the same for the reflected triangle.
Oh well. Hindsight...
They were VERY excited about this, so clearly, I should be doing more activities with maps. Next up to try with them?
Triplets of Cellville from Mathalicious!
I feel as though I'm losing my focus with the pre-algebra classes. My frustration and disappointment is starting to come to a head. Today, I gave them an assignment and put myself in the corner of the room, willing to answer any questions. A few kids worked VERY well. Others did not.
I need this weekend to compose my thoughts and develop a plan so that I don't give up on the pre-algebra class.
I hate the frequency with which I think that previous sentence.
I'm feeling that I need to spend some time teaching at another district to determine if it's me or the kids. A large portion of it IS me because I don't believe that there are students who are unteachable. But I don't believe that I have a realistic grasp of how much more I could and should be doing.
If I'm going to feel this way no matter where I am and what I'm teaching, then I need to change careers.
If this is just a function of the time and place, then I will continue to work my hardest and help who I can help.
I hate the idea of waking up in 30 years to realize that I should have picked a different career that would have made me happier.
Report Card Data:
In the 8th grade, there were 18 students who received a 4.0, 6 are in my geometry class (33%)
The average GPA in that class is a 3.6
Thank goodness the grades came out when they did. I don't want to have to wait until the standardized test scores get here to know what my students are worth.