Disclaimer: the views here are my own and not necessarily congruent with those of my colleagues, superiors, or students.
I was asked at the end of the 2015-2016 school year to take on a new role at my school as the “Math Concepts” teacher. I accepted, mainly because I wanted the opportunity to do it the right way.
The concepts model generally works like this: A student has Math (Algebra or Geometry) every other day. For some students, they need extra help and so they are given a second math class to support them called Math Concepts (Algebra or Geometry).
That is it. There is no further agreed upon detail. Nowhere is there a manual or document that outlines what happens during that 80 minutes of “support” every other day. I relish the opportunity to work with a blank slate, so this open ended prompt excited me.
However, I soon came to realize that not having clearly defined the expectations with the students, teachers, and administration has crippling consequences. This post is an effort to write out a little clarification after having the benefit of attempting a few things over the first 4 months school.
Concepts Primary Objectives
- Concepts should seek to accomplish multiple goals.
- Concepts should prepare students for success on standardized testing.
- Concepts should prepare students for success in their current math class.
- Concepts should prepare students for success in their future math classes.
The Lesson Outline (4 rounds of 15~20 minutes)
Round 1: KhanAcademy
Round 2: Notes/Instruction
Round 3: Activity
Round 4: Activity
- Quiz on Paper
- Quiz on Computer
- Geometric Construction
- Math Journal Writing
- Homework Time for Math (Study Hall)
- Homework Time for Any Class (Study Hall)
- Goal Setting & Reflection
- Makeup Work for Math Class
- Makeup Work for Any Class