Friday, January 09, 2015

Math: Week 17

SOLs Covered:  SOL 7.4 & 8.3 Proportional Reasoning
Math Packet:  #12 Solving Practical Problems Using Proportional Reasoning
Upcoming Assessments:  Consumer Math Quiz (Wed. 1/21); Proportional Reasoning Test (Mon. 1/26 & Tues. 1/27)

SOLs Covered:  SOL 8.3 Proportional Reasoning
Math Packet:  #12 Solving Practical Problems Using Proportional Reasoning
Upcoming Assessments:  Proportional Reasoning Test (Wed. 1/14 & Thurs. 1/15)

It's been a busy first week back to school after the winter break.  I was sick most of the break and I still wasn't completely healed when we returned (don't worry, no germs to pass along to your kids, just an ear infection that led to a ruptured eardrum by the time we returned).  Because of that, I'm still catching up on grading and will thus try to keep things short this week so I can get back to grading.

The 7H class continued with the same topic we left off on, proportional reasoning skills.  We finished the last few pages in the packet and also did a LearnZillion assignment during class.  By Friday, the students got a head start on the study guide for next week's test.  The MSM2 classes started working on proportional reasoning as well.  This week was just "the basics" of ratios, rates, and proportions, which the kids are already familiar with, so I spent a bit of time going over some of the "SOL twists" and general complications that can trip them up.  One of the biggest mistakes students make with proportions in general is setting them up incorrectly, so I showed the kids how writing a "word ratio" first can help with this.  Since any given proportion can be written four different ways, we came up with our own little reminder on how to check the other ways out.  We're calling it the #Hashtag method, checking that things match up top-bottom and left-right correctly.  We'll keep practicing this next week along with a bigger focus on consumer math and other questions dealing with solving problems using percentages.

I had all the classes set up a document in their Google math folders titled "Math Grades."  In the document, I had them paste all their grades from Synergy/StudentVUE that can be improved upon before the end of the term.  They should use this like a check sheet that they can mark off assignments as they take care of them.  If a non-assessment is marked as incomplete or missing, they simply need to finish it and turn it in for grading.  There are quite a few students who have actually completed assignments but simply are not the best at remembering to turn things in and several have already brought up grades once they realized this.  Assessment grades can be improved by doing corrections for missed items; if problems are still listed as "missed" in the notes section, they can still be improved.  While most of these things are no considered past-due, students have Liberty Points that can be spent as a "late fee" to "buy back" the grade penalty.  A column set up in the grades for each term so students can easily keep track of how many Liberty Points they have left.  In addition to this, students have been giving one last extra credit opportunity in addition to the TenMarks that was given over the break.  The details for this can be found in the math folder on Google Drive.  Please encourage students to take advantage of these opportunities to improve their grade before the term and semester end on January 29th.

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