OPEN HOUSESeptember 18th, 2014 5:45pm- 7:00pm Please see the flyer that was sent home with your children today.
Today's Lateral Thinking question:How can you throw a ball as hard as you can and have it come back to you, even if it doesn't hit anything, there is nothing attached to it, and no one else catches or throws it?
Now Playing During LunchThe Beginners Guide to Graphing Data.
Today's Class:I collected the corrected Invitation 13 The idea of hypothesis
Ball Bounce Challenge Students began the lab today and broke off into teams bouncing different types of balls and using the wall bricks to determine the estimated height of the bounces. If students have access to computers at home they can take their data sets home with them and begin toanalyze and input their data into an Excel spreadsheet so we can build our graphs. We will begin this on Wednesday.
We will also examine Global Issues.
From yesterday's class.Students listened attentively as I discussed their grades and asked them to imagine themselves standing in the middle of a huge field and needing to dig a well so they could have a drink. I explained that in a way, I am standing right there with them and I keep laying tools out in front of them to make their job easier, yet they are not picking up the tools. I then gave them the Chinese proverb that states, "When you are thirsty, it's too late to think of digging a well."
The take home message is that I have provided every learning tool I know to give them; I stay in my class during lunch so students can come in and view the videos if they do not have or could not get to a computer while at home. Additionally, I come in at 7:00am every day to open the room and allow them the opportunity to come in as well. I have provided this blog which I update twice daily, once in the morning and once in the evening so they have all of the resources I mentioned in class and they have the most up to date information. I have built and maintain a closed Face Book page called Star Fleet Training and asked them to join it as well as have their parents join it because I am online most of the time and if they post a question there, I usually answer within 5 minutes. There are also other parents, teachers, and students who provide homework help and hints how to be successful in class as well as science related current events. I gave them the REMIND, texting service and asked them to sign up and give it to their parents to sign up as well so that they will get a text when they have homework or projects, tests or quizzes coming up. I have given them permission to record me lecturing. I have allowed them to use their phones to take notes instead of writing them down. I allow them to listen to their music during tests and I have provided a complete syllabus with all of the class information in it. I also have other students record tests and quizzes on video so if they take better oral exams they can test like that.
All I can do is lay the tools out in front of them, but they have to be the ones to pick up those tools and actually choose to use them.
I further explained that this new lab is my tipping point. Either they will accept the way I am teaching because it is fun, interesting and a better way to actually learn and apply the skills they learn immediately to a project or I will will have to choose a method that I know will reach those who are not picking up the tools. I don't want to revert to using the textbook more, however if they will not act in their best interest and practice the BIG 3 in class then I will have to act in their best interest for them. This means utilizing our textbooks more and video homework less. That, in turn, will cut into labs, but the method is an effective way of reaching those who are resistant to my methods and are choosing to not take responsibility for their own education.
I finished by reminding them that there is not a single person in any of my classes who I think cannot learn and do well in class. I asked them to reflect upon what I told them the first day of school and what I have reiterated numerous times since then, If you come to class every day you are supposed to be here, AND you try your very best, then it is impossible to fail this class." I left them with this one simple question: Are you doing the very best that you can when it comes to our class?
Today's homework:Scientific Units the SI System and Metric Units Watch this video on the SI measurement system and be prepared for discussion.
Watch for review!How to construct a graph. I spoke briefly about the video homework and told the classes that there is no vocabulary quiz this week, however there will be a graphing quiz and all of the questions are contained within this video so they should watch it often.
Today's discussion question:
Why do you think having a standardized system of measurement is important?
PM Update:Reminder! Wednesday and Thursday are BLOCK days and there is no school Friday.