2017-06-02 – Day 23 – Last Day

The combination of working on so many things, being pulled in so many directions meant the beginning of summer was especially important to pull back and refill. The last day of school with students, while I would miss our good times together, I have to admit, I was all like….

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Especially considering we have an epic road trip planned to return us to the great northern reaches of this continent that I haven’t been to in over 16 years. So this summer….

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….epic road trip is going to be amazing! I wish everyone a happy summer, I will be off the grid for most of that time, and be all like…

med

 

Mission Accomplished

As I publish this reflection, I fear that this moment may turn into something along the lines of another famous moment….

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I am very honored to have met #IRL (in real life) the person that inspired this learning goal for me this school year: Having students produce a weekly learnings podcast for public consumption. Joe Young is an incredible TOSA for math and education and he shared this idea a long time ago, and when I had the pleasure of teaching two courses this year, I wanted to challenge myself and use this as one way students would show what they know.

Finally, this week, I found the magic recipe to making this happen, I assigned two students, one in each class to get the job done. Friday marked the turning point for me in doing some of the things I wanted to get done and continue to build on. Friday was also our first Mystery Skype with another group of students. While the connections prevented less opportunities for conversation, it was an entertaining and fun sort of thing.

While doing the Mystery Skype, we also produced our weekly podcasts for both classes. I loved the idea of having students interact with other students around mathematics and this public display showed a proof of concept.

All in all, I was very excited to have been able to edit, publish, upload, host, and publish to iTunes. I am currently waiting on a review of my two podcasts to be approved, and if that works they’ll be in iTunes. The Mystery Skype provided the opportunities for students to strategize their thinking and be able to try to problem solve.

The podcasts are linked:  Math 8    &/or     IM3

Well looking forward to another great week. Hope your week is as magical and moving you forward to meet your new goals.

#makeschooldifferent Challenge: Accepted (as I understand it)

From the first time I watched the above piece by the amazing teacher, Taylor Mali, I find myself shaking my head, goosebumps rising, and, by the end, yelling, “Hell Yeah!”

This evening, I was challenge by the amazing @mathprincessC to write a blog about #makeschooldifferent, to which I am responding here.

I admit, this is a challenging piece, I am sure in my rush to respond, I am missing many things, but I have a few things on my mind, and here we go.

peter-griffin_400x400I am a total goofball (think Peter to left), so I am able to make most serious and difficult situations a little less difficult through my bad jokes, and silly antics. The limit of productivity approaches the zero, as the function of my distance to productive center simultaneously approaches zero.

I encourage people to reach for more than they are capable of, I want others to see the amazing potential they have, and the value they bring to our world each and everyday.

I try to make school different by reaching one student everyday, to make that personal connection, build relationships, and make at least one positive interaction with at least one person per day.

To poorly paraphrase Gandhi, I make school different by being a model of the change I wish I would see in the world. gandhi-21

I challenge teachers to develop and foster relationships, I ask them to care, I want them to see their growth from day to day, week to week, and month to month. Focus on growth, we are all getting better together.

Those are some of the ways that I make school different, I believe if we change the culture through positive discourse, building relationships, and foster a growth mindset, we will all be a lot better off.

I guess what Taylor Mali says, I make schools a better place, because I make a difference, what about you?