The past couple of weeks have been sort of challenging. Trying to get back into a good routine in the classroom after our break and my kids have been sick. This time of year in New Jersey isn’t overly pleasant either, we had snow last week and the days are short. I was really looking for something to change my attitude and behavior, and luckily a couple of positive things happened.
Yesterday I attended a vertical articulation with the high school that my 8th graders attend (I teach in a K-8 district). The point of the meeting was to insure we (including the other sending districts) were all on the same page. In the next couple of weeks I will be doing course recommendation for my 8th graders for their HS classes. The meeting was very positive, and I got a lot of good feedback about how my students were doing in high school. It was reassuring knowing that I am doing a good job of preparing my students for high school, and that they are succeeding.
Today, I had one of those great teachers moments. We started a new chapter today in Algebra 1 about Exponential Equations and Functions. The first section is about Simplifying Radical Expressions, something the students have little to no prior knowledge of. I tried to use a Socratic method and ask a lot of questions and let the students lead the lesson, rather than me shoving rules down their throats. It seemed like the students created a pretty good understanding of the topic, and the lesson was a success. After class I had a student come up to me and say, “I really liked today’s lesson and I thought it was pretty cool.” Then another student who overheard the comment, agreed and said it was “FUN.” Math fun?????? It was one of those moments that makes you smile as a teacher and realize that you are doing a good job and positively affecting students lives. THAT’S WHY I TEACH!!!!!