This is a continuation from the earlier post. We move here from The Good to The Bad.
1) MATH CLUB
I grant that part of the problem here is how I aborted it in September (because the provincial government were being stupid) then only resumed in May, but even in 2011-12 it was a miracle to get three people out. I think part of it is because I don't want it to be me lecturing, I want it to be about whatever the students would like. Yet (3D marshmellow version of Pascal's Triangle aside) I'm not really getting any vibes there.
|Pictured: Student Initiative|
Maybe next year I should blitz for a week, where one day we watch a Numberphile video, another we talk circles, another I give them a puzzle, then I see where the preference is? Just DON'T KNOW. Don't want it to completely dissolve into being a place merely for those who are good at curriculum style math. But... people came out to a colleague for that, so maybe this has to be that at first, since right now, it's a nearly empty room.
2) MARKING QUIZZES IN CLASS
I instituted this in September, because I was concerned that the provincial government would become even more stupid, meaning I wouldn't have time to mark in my off hours. (What off hours?) The observant will see this was a "good" in November. I botched it.
While I still like giving the more instantaneous feedback, in the interests of time, I stopped taking them all in, only asking students to hand in if they wanted additional comments. Usually only two or three ever took me up on my offer, then I'd see communication errors on tests and wonder if some were a result of not catching those things when I was putting down quiz solutions. I'm also not great at catching who's struggling unless I see things written down, which I had deprived myself of doing.
So less marking for me, yes, but I don't feel like it was as effective as I wanted, or as it should have been. I have to find a balance somehow. Maybe take in every other quiz?
|One pound IS NOT 500 g! You FAIL!|
FROM BAD TO UGLY
1) CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT
This is always a problem for me. I figure if you don't want to work, it's your choice to fail. But this year in my C-level, some students not working was actively disrupting the ability of others to work. I should have reigned it in. I kind of tried, by drawing up a set of class expectations for the first time in years, but it only slowed the damage. I'm also lousy at hands-on, and I hate games (I rarely even play them with friends). But that's what they thrive on. Some students I knew weren't achieving their potential, and I hated myself for that, but apparently not enough to find a way to bloody well deal with it. Sigh. Maybe I'll become better at discipline if/when I have kids of my own? In the meantime, FAIL.
2) MARKING SCHEMES
I've blogged about this before. It used to take me 30 seconds per paper to total points. Now it takes me 2 minutes per paper to tally levels. Which turns 15 minutes into 60. Others in my department have this hybrid system that works for them; I think I'd still be second guessing myself. It's the editor in me... even if I did have a way to turn it off, I'm not sure I'd want to, for fear I couldn't get it back. Sigh. How do English teachers do it?! I think in numbers, that means I mark QUANTITATIVELY, not QUALITATIVELY, damn it!
Honestly, I feel like that's my biggest problem lately, because it's the one I'm actively trying to work at, and yet experience limited success.
Fortunately, I think that's the worst of it. My other items from November, namely personified math, use of website, and shutting up, have migrated to "meh" territory.
Of course, there's probably other things I need to improve on as well (like changing the date on the board more than once a week), but I don't want to get too down on myself. And if you have a suggestion for a fix, feel free to let me know!