Super Math Teacher

The thoughts of a middle school math teacher

Asking for help

I always encourage my students to ask for help.  Most of the time, they just give up.  This week, however, I had to ask for help.

My students are working on solving systems of equations.  This week, I introduced the dreaded word problem.  As soon as students saw the problems, I immediately heard the moans and groans.  The  “I hate word problems.”  So we walked through the steps, using a template, courtesy of Sarah Carter at Math Equals Love (follow her blog if you don’t already!  She is amazing!!)

I gave my students an assignment, which they started in class.  I always work out my answer keys by hand, so that I can anticipate where students will struggle.  Sure enough, I ran into trouble.

Writing my equations for one problem, I could only come up with one equation.  When I did get a second equation, it gave a negative answer, which made no sense in the context of the problem.  So I emailed a friend back in the US, asking her for help.  She sent 2 equations.  I decided I would graph the system, in order to make sure of the solution.  I had 3 equations, which unfortunately did not have a single point of intersection……They had 3 points of intersection.

Knowing my students would struggle, I reached out for help from a former student.  Thai is taking Algebra 2 as a freshman, so I figured he could help.  after he made some fun of me (which I knew would happen), he gave me the correct equation.

The next class period, I told my students about what happened.  I wanted them to see the value of asking for help.  Hopefully, they will appreciate the fact that I showed them it was okay to ask for help.

 

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Cap and Gown pictures

We have been back in school for a week now following Winter Break.  So far, we have had the graduation cap and gown pictures, an early release day, gotten a new student, lost a really good student, and started to narrow down the Junior Math competition team members.  A pretty busy week!

Graduation cap and gown pictures came early this year.  It makes the year seem so final,  even though there are a full 2 quarters to go.

Of course, we still had to get everyone in place, and fix all the tassels, and make sure no one had their eyes closed….with and without teachers in the picture.

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Of course, Mr Chris had to get in the spirit of things.

Students won’t wear these again until June…..

 

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