Week #30 Updates

When our spring break rolled around I was frustrated that it was so early in the year thinking “if only it were later the weather would be warmer.” No such luck – 2 weeks later and it is the exact same weather. At least I’m no longer jealous of schools with later breaks than us. We’ve been back two weeks from our break and during that time the school musical happened and spring sports really got going. It is a busy time for kids and parents!!

Here are a few reminders for everyone:

  • It is the last week of the marking period. Your child received a grade report from me today. It lists the marking period 3 grade along with one thing I think they really did GREAT with this marking period and one thing I’d love them to work on for the last marking period.
  • We have a unit test in Math 7 next Thursday. We’re almost done with Module 4 and ready to start our last unit for the year.
  • Pre-Algebra is in the 2nd half of our linear equations unit. We’re going to continue to learn as much as we can about linear equations!!

In Math 7 we are in the final parts of working with percents. There are formulas to learn and concepts to understand and my goal for all the kids is to try to move past the rote memorization of formulas to a full understanding of the concept. In that effort, we’re going to have a day of work with food labels followed by a day where we work with real world things.

I read a book over spring break that was filled with statistics about our health care system, our prison system and more. I spent the week saying to my husband, “You won’t believe this and that and …” until he finally said, “I appreciate that you love this book but I am not a bit interested in this.” Fair enough. I was reading through the lens of math teacher in the middle of teaching percents. This book is filled with interesting statistics and will provide the opportunity for some really nice conversations. Because let’s face it, how often do we really engage in interesting real world conversations in 7th grade math class? I took screen shot after screen s

hot of my book and then changed the reading level to fit 7th graders, pulling out what I considered to be debatable topics to discuss in class. Here is the link to the excerpts that I put together if you are interested in reading them. All materi

al comes from The Death Gap: How Inequality kills.  I hope to use this in pre-Algebra if we can carve out some time for the opportunity to review a topic from early in the year and have some good conversation.

In pre-Algebra we are still in our linear equations unit. By now the kids should be able to graph linear equations. I say should because these things take awhile to digest. Some are in a place where most of the time it goes well but they are struggling with integer operations or forgetting the difference between positive slope and negative slope or even just mixing up the x and y values in the slope formula. I’m trying to give them as full a picture of the linear equation as possible so they can attack them from all angles. We’re moving to solving systems of equations by graphing and learning several ways to write the equation of a line. This has the dual benefit of providing us with review of graphing. Now it is suddenly like going from ice-skating for fun and playing hockey; the point is to find the intersection point so it is assumed that we have the basics of graphing. Now that we’re not so focused on those basics it is easier to graph (at least that’s what I expect to happen with this weekend’s home practice).

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out! One last update – our painting are not yet up in the hallway. Sigh … Soon … the good news is that the last group may finish this week 🙂