I've decided I don't have enough to do, what with adjusting to a new school, new classes and new kids. After years of watching other teachers do amazing things with foldables and interactive notebooks, I've decided to start that too. I'm not going to go all out because I know how burned out I would get, but I plan to incorporate some elements.
I'm starting to creep on Julie, Sarah and Anna because they are brilliant and have a ton of resources and tips.
My integrated class doesn't really have a curriculum or standards, but it does have a text book, which I will be using for a sequence. We will be starting the year with data analysis. I plan for them to do projects as much as possible.
Since both Math 7 and Pre-Algebra start the year with a review of real numbers and their properties, I thought it would be a great time to introduce the Vertical Number Line.
Before we did that, however, we initiated #MistakeMonday. I talked a bit about growth mindset and the value of learning from our mistakes. In later classes (after I thought about it) I showed the music video for Shakira's song "Try Everything" from Zootopia.
Have you see Zootopia? No?? Stop reading this and go see it now!
I asked the students to take 5 minutes and write about a mistake they made in the past week and how they can learn from it this week. As the year progresses, I'll ask them to make them academic mistakes, but for now, it was anything.
I wrote about how I made my wife feel bad this weekend when there was no need. It served no purpose except to make me feel better. I should never try to improve my mood at the expense of someone else's feelings, especially someone I love.
I asked the students to share, if they felt comfortable doing so and many of them did. Several mistakes were about leaving ice cream out or not putting away the dishes, but a few dealt with heavier issues, such as one girl making fun of her sister when she didn't need to.
My hope is that over time, students will feel more and more comfortable sharing their mistakes in class and we can, at least in some small part, do away with the stigma against mistakes.
The classes continue to get more squirrelly and challenging as the day goes on. There are a high number of students with IEPs in my last 2 classes and even with my co-teacher, it's becoming difficult to keep them on track.
It's still difficult for me to tell the difference between age-appropriate behavior and what needs to be addressed.
I didn't get enough sleep last night.
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