Math = Love: Things to CHANGE 2014-2015 School Year

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Things to CHANGE 2014-2015 School Year

A few days ago, I posted the advice my students gave me on what to KEEP for next school year.  That was all positive stuff, so it was pretty easy to post.  Today, I'm posting what my students told me I need to CHANGE for next year.  Part of me is nervous about posting this because all of this feedback doesn't exactly paint me in the best light.  I know I have lots of room for improvement.  And, I'm thankful for this feedback from my students.  The point of this blog is to be honest about my strengths and my weaknesses so I can get better and help others get better.  Plus, the #MTBoS is always here to help!

Looking over these, it seems like my students weren't happy about the desks.  That's probably because I have this tendency to go back and forth between groups and rows.  All of the kids are never happy.  Honestly, I'm never happy with the desk set-up, either.  My room is just too small for 24 desks to fit nicely.  So, no matter what seating arrangement I try, there is never enough room.  Also - my kids can never agree on anything.

Things to CHANGE (According to my students) 

  • Supplies X2
    • Better glue
    • Change out the markers / glue sticks
    • New Markers X2
    • Different glue X2
  • Classroom Management and Structure
    • Seats X8
    • The way the seats are arranged
    • We need to use the bell more often
    • Maybe taking phones if necessary
    • Your room arrangement
    • The seating back to groups
    • Seating X2
    • Desk arrangements
    • Your room layout
    • The seats in your classroom often
    • Seating arrangement - we need tables
    • Classroom
  • Ms. Hagan
    • Your Jokes X4
    • Your Attitude 
    • Collect more cats
    • Your teaching - teach out of a book for a year
    • Have your boyfriend change your last name some day.
    • Get contacts. (This totally happened in March 2014.  Guess I don't wear them often enough...)
  • Classroom Decorations
    • The "Go Tulsa" sign - I don't like Tulsa
    • Too much color in the room - it gets distracting sometimes X2
    • Your Words (This kid had a sense of humor...)
    • Posters X2
    • The dangly stuff from the lights to something different
    • Decorations
    • The decorations in the class
    • The curtains
  • Instruction
    • The lack of fun
    • Your strategy for math
    • How fast we learn the lessons
    • Writing
    • Math
    • How you teach conic sections
    • More hands-on stuff
    • Less quizzes and more group projects, if possible.  Quizzes stress me out. 
    • Quizzes X3
    • Do white boards more
    • Do more math games X3
    • Do less work
    • The no homework thing
    • The dullness
    • The Grading System X2
    • Quizzes so the problems are more reasonable
    • Hats
    • Make them change the bell schedule
    • If your supplies aren't on the table, it's counted as an absence
  • Miscellaneous
    • Nothing X2
    • Days of the Week X2 - Change Monday to something else that goes with an M.


  1. I once had the students come up with a plan for the seats. They had to make as many people happy as they could and justify why the desks were arranged as they were. I had final say, of course. It turned out really well.

    1. Great idea! There's a chance that I may have a bigger classroom next year, too, which would help with the seating issues.

  2. To prepare for STAAR our Algebra team played Texas Hold 'Em. We created (school mascot $5) money gave each group $20. Groups were allowed to bet only what they had. They had to place the bet before they seen the question. We use Promethean boards but you can use PowerPoint just the same, with 8 - 10 questions. Students are given a set time to answer. Show answers after time is up.Walk around and make note of which groups answered correctly. Money is taken from groups who answered wrong and money was given to the groups who were right. Very briefly go over answer to help students that struggled. Each person in the group had to show work or they didn't receive credit. This game was used as review. Hope your students enjoy. Sorry about my post being lengthy.