Wednesday, January 20, 2016

A Day in the Life of a Math Teacher: 2016 Blogging Initiative

As part of the MTBoS Blogging initiative, today I will capture my "Day in the Life of a Math Teacher."

I am a week late, but I was the lead chaperone on an Immersion Trip to Canada with 22 students and three other chaperones last week. It was truly the trip of a lifetime, not just because the kids were fantastic, but because the chaperones were too. We went dog sledding, tobogganing, tubing, and visited an Ice Hotel, a Canadiens game, and so so much, onto my Day in the Life.

5:45 - Wake up to Allison by Elvis Costello. My husband reminds me that I need to make the alarm lower. I agree as it wakes us up to the core. I forget to try to change it every evening, and so it's "Groundhog's Day" all over again tomorrow.

5:45 - 6:00 Shower

6:00 - 6:30 My favorite part of the The Skimm, catch up on emails, texts, and go through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Blog feeds. I had 130 Blogs waiting in my inbox when I got back from Canada!

6:30 - 7:00 Get dressed and ready for work

7:00 - 7:10 Make breakfast and take things out to the car

7:10 - 7:50 Drive to school. I've been making this drive for 20.5 years, 12.5 of which have been with my son. He has been coming to school with me since Kindergarten, and now he is finishing up his senior year at SA!

7:50 - 8:05 Go to the faculty lounge to make Via Starbucks coffee...the coffee in the lounge is just too weak for me! Say hello to several colleagues. Punny Guy and I contemplate rhombi at the copy machine (true story). Colleague A and I talk about Mu Alpha Theta (Math Club) announcements.

8:05 - 8:30 
-write this up
-email with Student A about upcoming MAO competition
-Student B pops in with a question
-email Department Chair about organizing AMC competition and a middle school student needing a peer tutor

Keep in mind that this is my easy day. I only have one hour and a half class...this is why I have time at all to blog. Yesterday, I taught or worked in the Math Lab from 8:30 - 3:30 with only two ten minute breaks, and 30-minute lunch. Then from 3:30 - 4:00 there was a math competition. But today is easy in comparison!

8:30 - 10:00 Honors Problem Solving Seminar
We were not in school last week, so I need to pick back up from where I left off. Half the students are new this semester, so I have to do some differentiated teaching. My plan is that one-half will learn how to do the Rubik's Cube (see my blog here), and the other half will work on math competition problems today. Yesterday after school, I worked on a draft of how to solve the Rubik's Cube, which I will allow my one-half to try out today. I also asked Dan Van Der Vieren to collaborate. I will also assign Problem Set 9 for them to work on for a week outside of class. We are getting ready to build our mosaic of our school crest! I am so excited and am thankful for for providing 225 free Rubik's cubes! We have a lot of work ahead of us, but this is the idea, below:
OK, so #MTBoS changes everything, as I wrote about here. I gave this warm-up to my Problem Solving class from My plan was just to make it a warm-up...students have been working on it for an entire hour! We emailed for a's a tough one, but my students love the challenge.

My student called this an "asymptote problem," because you get "really close to the answer, but you never get it."

Hoping to hear from the person who posted the problem soon. Also, taught one student how to get to level 2 of the Rubik's Cube and taught a new student how to get the white cross. Very fun class!

10:00 - 10:15 Pick up Work Wife and Fun Bobby and walk to Chapel. Gave Work Wife the geometry problem in hopes she will help us. Talk about shoes that are suitable for the "cold front" we have here in Florida, and how to handle a situation that came up in class.

10:15 - 10:45 Chapel
We sang Amazing Grace, said the Pledge of Allegiance, and listened to opening prayers...this one was interesting, and became part of the homily: "And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own?" Our reverend went on to talk about reflection and introspection before judging. He showed the video above and talked about how we all need some harmony in our lives rather than judge others. We had a birth this week in the community and a death. Life.

10:45 - 10:50 Walk back to classroom with Punny Guy. Of course, a pun was told along the way. Wish I could remember it now!

10:50 - 11:20 Debrief with Sheila from Explorica about our trip to Canada. Briefly talk about possibilities for next year.

11:20 - 11:35 Walk to Math Lab and sing happy birthday to Colleague A with math department.

11:35 - 12:05 Work on quiz, print materials for class tomorrow, answer emails, look over possible Immersion Trip for next year that Sheila already sent me!

12:05 - 12:35 lunch--caught up with Bestie. Haven't seen her in a while!

12:35 - 12:40 Deans office for peanut m&m's, Head of Upper School's office for lotion for my chapped hands!

12:40 - 2:45 Worked on getting Mosaic ready for Friday's class, emailed art teacher, answered emails; Graded most of the grading from when I was away last week

2:45 - 2:55 On hold with Sur La Table--to see if we can have a cooking class reunion for our immersion trip.

2:55 - 3:30 helped students with math, sent messages on classroom google to student groups about looking for a peer tutor and also for Algebra 2 honors class to google change of base theorem because I forgot it was in their homework; collected MAO check from student

3:30 - 3:45 chatted with Work Wife about new geo book possibilities and weekend plans. Find it unbelievable that she looked at new book (Jacobs) today, and it has the same impossible geometry problem in it!

3:45 - 4:10 got butcher paper from an art teacher, talked to her about getting her to enter one of her pictures into the mosaic contest. Found a peer tutor for Middle School student! Working on getting a second one.

4:10 - 4:20 entered Florida Math League scores

4:20 - 4:45 Delivered Trig Formula Sheet and Florida Math League papers to colleagues mailboxes and chatted with My Vault about blessings and curses and children and colleges and Jewish Forum

4:45 - 5:10 talked with Sur La Table representative--pricey...texted student to see what he thinks...checked on another cooking school.

I am glad that I am in the habit of doing all of my lesson planning on the weekends because so much of my easy day is spent doing other things! Though, truly, I contemplate having more free time on the weekends...

5:10 - 6:10 change and work out--tried Piyo DVD...hard!

6:10 - 7:00 drive home, ask kid about his day, watch him catch up on his sleep

7:00 - 8:00 enjoy this dinner hubby made, clean up

8:00 - 9:00 catch up on emails and texts, clean, get ready for tomorrow...4 peer tutors available for middle school! Entered workout into #FITBoS sheet. Tweet out help on the geo problem. Sur La Table is No. Pack stuff up for tomorrow, including Exploding Kittens.

9:00 -? Chill with hubby, watch TV, catch up on Words with Friends and Pinterest, and then we do it all again. Will I remember to change the volume of my alarm? Probably not :(

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