At the end of last semester, math teacher Michelle Russell found herself discouraged. A month-long battle with pneumonia left her without much joy or enthusiasm. “I realized I needed to reflect and make some adjustments.” Read the four 2018 resolutions she came up with.
Category: Meaningful Math
Michelle Russell knows that listening to math talk can help students solidify their thinking and recall. Now she’s begun to realize how much improvements in her own listening skills could help her with assessment of learning. Check out the helpful resources she found.
This fall Michelle Russell implemented a new policy of assigning but not checking math homework, and then checking homework understanding with short quizzes. After 15 weeks of school, she’s ready to share the results so far. Learn her “good, bad, and ugly” findings.
Math students retain more and gain confidence when they understand why a process works. But some are more interested than others in learning about the Why. Michelle Russell considers how she can best include the Why as students learn the How of problem solving.
Math teacher Michelle Russell has come to believe that having students working at the whiteboard is a good teaching practice. Even so, she’s been busy exploring advantages and disadvantages via online and student research, striving to make a good practice even better.
Michelle Russell’s first week back in math class went great. Learn how she launched her classroom communities, thanks to teachers whose activities and ideas she scouted out online. Michelle has included all the students’ favorites in case you’d like to try some yourself!
Michelle Russell anticipates her math students will arrive in a few weeks with predictable gaps in their understanding of operations involving fractions and equations. To be more proactive, she’ll offer some refresher activities during the first week of school.
With her classroom door closed for summer, Michelle Russell looks back at the goals she set 9 months ago: to know her students in a meaningful way, to use formative assessment effectively, and to bring more joy to her classes. She shares her successes and some fails.
Talk of differentiated instruction in large, diverse classrooms makes many secondary teachers feel defensive. Math educator Michelle Russell is no exception, but because “I know it’s important” she’s set out to find strategies that will better serve all her learners.
Standardized testing and the end-of-year rush leave Michelle Russell feeling low on energy, ideas and patience. She shares strategies she uses to bounce back and help her students do their best, starting with strengthening school relationships and having some fun.