Vito Prosciutto: Teaching community college math on the road to a PhD.

Friday, February 13, 2004


Blogging at 15,000 feet as I fly out to see my fiancée for the long weekend. A potpourri of leftover comments at week's end:

Algebra class had a quiz today, and it was kind of relaxing to have the kids working individually and silently for the whole period. I graded one quiz at the airport and the result was a bit disappointing, but this was a student who has not done well so far to begin with.

It also gave me a nice uninterrupted time to deal with individual student issues like missing homework and passing out replacement worksheets for students who had lost theirs.

I think that I'm going to revise my filing system. Right now I have colored folders for each day of the week. Completely useless for me. I'd heard this suggested elsewhere and thought I'd give it a try, but this sort of organization doesn't really gibe with what I do in my files. The files that I use the most are the folders labelled "[Class/period] To Be Graded" and "[Class/period] To Be Returned". What I need are folders of "future worksheets" "past worksheets" "future quizzes/tests" and "past quizzes/tests" and perhaps a "This class" folder.

I'm also going to make a minor change to my system for keeping track of students' work in the index cards I print up for my Algebra II class. For that group, I'm going to include space to track attendence/tardies and also spaces for the quiz and test scores so that the card can be a complete class record in the palm of my hand. One of these days, I'll upload a sample card to a free image hosting site so that my system will be clearer to my readers here.

Geometry saw the beginning of a two-day review period. Today the student worked in groups. Because we hadn't had a chance to go over homework yesterday, I incorporated homework review into the homework. As I checked in homework with each group I instructed them to compare answers so that they could see which problems were difficult for them. I don't think that this aspect of the review worked very well. Towards the end of the class, I read off the answers to problems which had short answers and it seemed as if the students hadn't done the comparison work.

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