So today was great, the kids are really awesome, both 7th and 8th grade I just love them! The class periods go FAST! I am so worried about implementing the workshop model!! I will do it though!!! :)
Today we just did a kind of get to know the class/teacher day. I went with the whole I wonder, I notice? idea and the kids liked it a lot. It got them involved and I was able to teach some procedures just by giving them answers to what they noticed and wondered! One of them was my SWAG sign.
I started by asking them if they remembered SLANT (Sit up, lean forward, ask questions, nod, track speaker) It is a strategy from Teach Like a Champion, that the staff had to read a few years ago. It was one of those things we were told to implement, but it never "stuck" I could never get into the practice or routine of saying "I need to see you SLANT!" it always made me think I was asking them to slump over! So as soon as I mentioned it they groaned. I explained how even I didn't like it, but that I liked the idea behind it. That it is just a gentle reminder of how you should be sitting in class, and to focus. Then I said that what I could get into the habit of saying was "Show me your SWAG" They loved it! It was great when one or two boys didn't sit up right away and I was able to jokingly say "oh man, so and so doesn't have any SWAG!" They would immediately sit right up!
Like I said it went fast, I am not really used to these short classes (48 minutes each compared to the 75 I had last year)
Tomorrow I plan on passing out syllabus and do procedure and routines. I am going to have them start working on community building as well and start off with the Post-it poster activity that I got from Sherrie at http://7thgrademathteacherextraordinaire.blogspot.com/
Oh and the other cool thing that I did was wrote a Vision Statement for my classroom!! Here is our Vision Statement:
We will persevere in problem solving. We will not fear mistakes but embrace them as opportunities for learning. We shall achieve the goal of becoming mathematical thinkers.