5 Things Every Teacher Should Know About Twitter

Over the past few weeks, several people have asked me how to take the next step with Twitter, whether that meant joining for the first time, or taking their tweeting to the next level. Assuming you already have an account (if not, go here), here are five things every teacher should know about Twitter. 1. Don’t skimp on your profile setup There’s a lot …

Embracing Mistakes with a New Weekly Routine

Over the last 11 years in the classroom, I’ve had the same teaching schedule exactly zero times. Every time August rolls around, it’s a different ballgame. Some years the shifts are subtle. In other years they’re quite dramatic. Within each year, I’ve never taught more than two sections of the same course. In fact, one year I taught seven different courses. (Assuming, of course, that you’ll …

Twitter Chats vs Family Dinners: Do We Really Have to Choose?

I love Twitter. I think I’m on record in several places with this. (Actually, it’s probably more along the lines of “I love the Twitter,” just because it’s more fun to say it that way. Go ahead, give it a try.) I love Twitter chats. This is probably less well known. And the less-well-known-ness is likely a result of my general lack of participation in …

Four Points, One Line

As my students have worked through a series of linear graphing challenges this month, I’ve been looking for a way to challenge them to synthesize (and hopefully even extend) what they’ve noticed over the past few weeks. I think I’ve found my culminating challenge. My Goal My goal is to elicit a variety of equation styles (point-slope, slope-intercept, etc), and my hope is …

“I would give anything for students who are…”

However you would complete that sentence—whatever characteristics you most desire to see in the students who walk through your door… Make it your main goal, day after day, to develop those qualities in your own students. For the record:

Two Wrongs and a Right

Thoughtful analysis of mistakes is a great way to develop and deepen mathematical understanding. Ever since I stumbled across Michael’s Pershan’s Math Mistakes website, I’ve been looking for ways to incorporate more error analysis into my classroom and department. One practice I’ve been using for years is Assessment Corrections, where students identify, correct, and reflect on recent assessment mistakes. (Here’s the form I use to …

Amazing Alfred

Have I mentioned that I love my job? After a great first week back in the classroom, my Saturday night just ended on an even higher note. First, I got this notification just before heading out for an elegant dinner with my wife: I ignored it for the time being. When I returned home and fired up my email, I found this …

I Need Your Help: Building Statistical Reasoning

I need your help. And it shouldn’t take long. A Few of My Favorite Things I have a handful of go-to routines that work well in a variety of courses for a wide range of students: Estimation 180 Would You Rather Math Visual Patterns Match My Graph Proportion Play I’ve used some of these for years, and others for just a few …

Age-Appropriate? Not Exactly. Valuable? Absolutely.

I started something new this week. I’m not entirely sure where it will end up, but I like how things are shaping up after just one challenge. Here’s what I presented to my students: https://www.desmos.com/calculator/kposfnfytr Age-appropriate for Precalculus and Calculus? Not exactly. With a slight nudge, this is something a group of Desmos-equipped 6th graders could tackle. But… Oh. My. …

6 Goals for 2015

2014 was a blessing-filled blast. I think 2015 will be too. I’ve set a few goals for the year; some personal, some professional. While several of them are too private (or boring) to share here, I’ll share the rest in the hope that someone else will be encouraged, possibly because they’ve set similar goals, or because they haven’t (but might …