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{ Yearly Archives } 2009

Little People

The last time I effectively taught adding & subtracting with negative numbers I was on to a good idea, but there were a couple of faults – only the kids actually walking the number line were engaged, and they lost their positional cues as soon as they went back to their desk. So this time, […]

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So I signed up for that better lesson thing. And I’m not using it. Take this recent lesson from my pre algebra class, for example. The obvious WCYDWT is fractions. The trick, what made my lesson work, is that I had kids figuring out how many people you could split it between, smallest number you […]

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Fingers crossed

What’s wrong with this picture? To be fair to my administration, the classroom hasn’t been officially released by the district (apparently the school does not retain control of rooms that are being remodeled) and it is still being used as storage for other classrooms that are being remodeled – hence the stacks of tables and […]



Our new textbooks come with consumable workbooks. They’ve already been delivered to our rooms, so that we’ll have them ready for the students on the first day of class (what with the William’s decree and everything) I’m teaching two periods of Algebra Readiness, with between 25-30 kids per class. I got 30 textbooks for the […]

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On your mark…

It’s amazing how much even some resolution can change my attitude. I know I have a room1. I know what grade level I’m going to be teaching. I’ve had my first department meeting, and all of my fellow teachers are interested both in math, and in teaching. I know that I’m going to have a […]

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My district seems to start way later than everyone else. I’m seeing a lot of first days/weeks of class type posts, and I still have no idea what I’m going to be doing. I don’t even know if there is going to be a new teacher orientation day, or more than one staff day before […]

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Compartments (3)

I’d mentioned way back when that my school was taken over by the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools – Mayor Villaraigosa’s political effort to do something about education. After the first year, he’s quite happy to be able to take credit for some big progress. I could go on the usual rant here about politicians […]

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Compartments (2)

Sometimes you’re just fed the right straight lines. From a comment on my previous post: “Learn to keep your door closed and locked and your phone off the hook.” The thing is, I’d already come to this conclusion on my own. All1 of the teachers that I respected at that school followed this strategy. They […]

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Compartments (1)

This post has been a long time coming. I’ve obviously dropped off on posting for a while. I’ve been blocked. As you can tell, from reading back a bit, a big part of that has been due to my frustrations and feelings of failure. I’ve been thinking of how to express those, how to evaluate […]

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Start School When?

I’m seeing a bunch of teacher blogs about getting ready for school in a week or two. The back to school ads are out in force. I’m still almost four weeks away from the first day of class. Which is okay, I guess. I’m enjoying my summer. But, we also have a month and a […]

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