Thursday, September 13, 2012

It's been a week...

Today was the first day that I started really doing math stuff with my classes and we started with a couple pages in their ISNs.  I'm trying to focus on getting them into a system so that things can run easily.  I modeled things heavily the first day, but for the past two days I am trying to get them into the habit of understandaing that seeing "5-6 Translating Math" written on the board means that they need to copy this into their table of contents and set up the corresponding page headings.  Today we also had two Words Worth Knowing so they entered those in too.  I would say that at this point maybe like 1/4 of each period (I have really small classes so this equates to about 3 kids) have it down so far.  For today being our third day putting in pages I guess that's not bad.  A few kids today saw the words written under the WWK sign on the board and just went ahead and entered them- nice!

4 comments:

  1. How do you set up your copy of the book - do you do it in advance? Do parts of it with different class periods? I am struggling with this, although I am not doing things exactly like a true ISN, I'm feeling a little unsure of the best way to organize my copy.

    Also, I think I remember seeing that you teach with CMP and use the ISN only for the foldables, notes, etc and not for investigations. Where do students do their investigations and homework?

    My school has always had students do their investigations, homework, etc right in the graph paper composition book ("math journal") and I am modifying that this year to use a table of contents, page numbers, headings, etc because I'm tired of hunting around for certain investigations, but I am definitely feeling a little pressed for space too.

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    1. As far as setting it up, it depenends (usually on how ambitious I'm feeling haha). Sometimes I'll already have my page for the day set up, but others I'll set mine up with my first period of the day and then use it to model the rest of the day.

      I create a different ISN for each different course. So this year I have two for the two different courses I'm making them with.

      I did use it for CMP before and thought it went along perfectly. I had them keep investigations and HW in a binder that got cleaned out after each unit. I honestly didn't think kids would ever look back through old investigations once we finished, but I did want them to look through the foldables and notes we took so that's all that went in their ISN.

      If space is an issue you can always use more than one notebook. I'm thinking I'm going to end up doing that this year with my algebra class.

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    2. I think next year I might have them keep a separate ISN, and do investigations/homework in their binder. This isn't how most other teachers do it, and I do like having the homework in one place, so maybe I would just have them keep two composition books, one ISN and one for everything else - right now, they keep worksheets (skills/AP sheets or other supplements) in their binder and we clean that out after each unit, so it would be easy to throw regular HW and investigations in there too. I will definitely be thinking about this throughout the year. We are definitely going to go into a second composition book this year.

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  2. I can't thank you enough for your posts. I have started using ISNs with my "RSP/SDC" Algebra classes this year and really like them so far. I have to modify things and go a bit slower to meet the needs of my students but I think the extra time spent will be worth it. They have already commented that they enjoy making the foldables and using the ISNs better than taking notes - little do they know...... :)

    One question - What do you do about students that enter your class in the middle of the year? Do you have extra notebooks already set up for them? Just give them a blank copy and have them start whereever you are at in the curriculum? Because of the nature of my class, I am constantly getting new students. Most are coming to me from the general ed math classes (we always strive for mainstreaming first). I have already received 6 new students in the first 3 weeks of school. Four of them just in the last couple of days. I have just been helping them set up the table of contents and then having them dive right in, even if that means starting the table of contents on page 13. But then they miss all of the good set up material!! Would love to hear your opinion.

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