Monday, December 17, 2012

Finals Week

It's Here! It's Here! I'm sure the kids are super thrilled to last-minute cram a whole semester's worth of knowledge into their heads. I know I'M THRILLED to see how they fare (fingers crossed). I also know it's time to sit back and reflect on the semester and what I can do to improve and encourage for the next round.

The student surveys for each class revealed some good tips for me. Some of them were of the hit myself on the forehead for the "why didn't I think of that" variety. For example, we've been using Haiku as a school to post our flipped lessons and such. We also have a separate homework calendar. I also have a third website where I sometimes post links to helpful websites. Hmmmmmm, combine them all on particular Haiku pages so the students only have to look in one place. Of course!

They also clamored for more examples, more examples. Haiku to the rescue. I always run out of time in class and only get in one or 2 examples. I could scan and post extras on the site.

They (AP Calculus AB) also reminded me to keep up with the pep talks. A large part of their success is just knowing they can do it and them keeping the faith that they are capable. I know they can do it ... I just have to keep reminding myself that they need reminders that THEY can do it. DO IT! It's easy to forget sometimes that they're little kids (and humans) and their insecurities cram into their brains and mess with them and make them more susceptible to giving up and not pushing through. Sheesh! Humans!

I also need to revamp my attitude. The five preps and extra school related activities and insomnia and life have been messing with my mind and personality. I found I'm more apt to blurt out a sarcastic comment or suggestion instead of a helpful one to students. Who put the crabby into my pants? Hmmmm, not a nice visual. I have to fake the nice until I make the nice attitude. I. Can. Do. It. Go Me! Viva La Math!


  1. Anonymous7:28 AM

    Hi Shireen- Wanted to thank you for the pep talk idea. Heaven knows all the good people in my life have been giving ME pep talks to get ME through this Calculus-thing. After reading your post I realized I haven't been so good about giving my kids (who need it all the more, I am sure) much in the way of "pep". So, yesterday I wrote a letter to all and shined it up on the whiteboard. It felt good to be genuine and say how I really felt about these amazing kids. And their response upon reading it was pretty awesome. Thanks, yet again, for being an inspiration and for sharing your insight and great ideas!
    :-) Jen

  2. Thanks, Jen! I too keep forgetting (and most likely will in the future) that they're humans and need boosting, and (shockingly!) it's not all about me (though it should be, right?).

    Congratulations on a first semester successfully navigated.