Monday, April 23, 2012

My "September-to-May Home-Away-From-Home"

This weekend I took a cool picture of...... well that's for another post. Anyhow, it inspired me to take a similar picture of my work surroundings and will therefore be the subject of this first official post!
I'm a teacher at the high school in our town, it's actually the same high school I graduated from. Overall, this works out pretty well, but occassionally my world gets a little too "small" and I get a little claustrophobic. But most importantly, I'm doing what I really enjoy--teaching math. I teach Freshman Algebra 1 for most of the day, and one class of Pre-Calculus to a group of juniors and seniors. I LOVE the concepts in Algebra 1 and I LOVE the challenge of Pre-Calc. My students in Pre-Calc are very bright and eager learners, which makes my job easy, fast-paced, and fun. One activity that I am looking forward to doing with my Algebra 1 students this week is a puzzle similar to this:
The students will work in pairs or groups of 3 to unscramble the puzzle pieces by matching up the edges with the correct problems and answers, which will create a 3 x 3 square. This is a great activity because everyone has to be involved and participate. They learn a lot from it, too, especially as they struggle to get the puzzle started. This is an example of a puzzle in the pre-cut-up stage. This concept could be adapted to any age level and any content area. Here are some examples: learning contractions, matching kindom/phylum/genus, etc., states and capitols for geography, or even story characters and their corresponding literary work. I've also seen this in triangular form where one equilateral triangle is cut into 4 smaller equilateral triangles. The key to a good puzzle, though, is the tricker-edges to throw the students off!!! Let me know if you've ever done a puzzle like this! Do you have any other suggestions?


Kort Randall said...

Awesome, Carrie. You are Mr. Schnorr... I love it.

Kort Randall said...
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Carrie said...

Kort-- Mr. Schnorr would never have wasted the time I do on silly things like puzzles and artwork. He was so much more straight to the point. And grown-up!