Friday, February 15, 2013

Weekly Class Summary: Feb. 11-15

SOLs Covered: 7.8 & 8.8 Geometric Transformations
Math Dictionary Sections: (34) Polygons; (35) Coordinate Plane; (36) Transformations
Upcoming Assessments: Transformations Quiz (Fri. 2/22); Test 3.2 on Trans. & Sim/Con (Fri. 3/1)

This will be a super quick summary since I have to run off a bit earlier today than usual.  As word somehow got out amongst the kids, today is my birthday and I have to meet up with my family.  The kids were really sweet with all the well wishes (if a bit overly boisterous at times) and I sincerely thank them for the kind thoughts.

We reviewed for a test on quadrilaterals and angle relationships on Monday, taking the test on Tuesday.  Since I wasn't entirely happy with the test as a whole (student difficulties on top of errors on the test itself), I decided to scrap it as a regular test grade and instead gave them a participation grade for the work.  We'll go over it next week once we've caught up on our transformations work, which is what we worked on the rest of the week.

Geometric transformations is a completely new topic to seventh graders, so students struggled a bit with it at first.  We did a group activity that had the students doing table-top transformations with a few pre-made shapes they were able to manipulate on giant coordiante planes spreadout across their grouped desks.  Again, this was a bit of a struggle at first, so I moved to having them follow along as I worked with an even bigger version of the cutout shapes on the board cartesian grid.  Things started to click a bit more and by the time we got through the accompanying handouts by the end of the week, students seem to be really wrapping their heads around everything.  We'll continue this unit through next week, taking the quiz on Friday.

While a Math Dictionary was already made for this section, I've already decided on a few additions that need to be made, so their will soon be a new file uploaded to take the current one's place.  I've also decided that instead of giving the notes to the students, they will now start copying most of it by hand.  They'll still be able to access the electronic copies and can even print them to include in their personal Math Dictionaries, but I am finding that most have stopped studying it and some have even stopped bringing it to class altogether.  I'm hoping that having them copy things themselves will get them to start paying more attention to the notes and hopefully retaining more of the information.  Students with special needs will still get a back-up set of notes along with any student absent the day of notes.

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