Monthly Archives: September 2014

Sunday Summary: Websites, Autumn Leaves, Colored Cups, and Canning Tomatoes

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3 Things I love about my class website.

Everybody posts pictures of their classroom – and I do too.  But I have to tell you that I’m just as proud, if not more proud of my class website.  It’s very low-maintenance on my end, but gives a huge amount of information to parents and students.

Class Webpage

Click on this image to visit my live class webpage.

First of all, I love my Remind widget and my link to sign up for my Remind messages. I highly advertise my reminders at the beginning of the year, but some students miss it and want to sign up later. All the information they need to do that is on my school website – which all of them know how to find.

The second thing I love about my website is my Math Practice Logs page. On that page is a link to a google doc that I use to keep updated lists of the homework I assign each day.  I have the settings on the doc shared so that anyone with the link can view it, but only I can edit it.  I love this thing.  Posting assignments using a google doc means that I don’t have to sign into and navigate through my school district’s web-hosting system any time I want to add an assignment. All I have to do is click on the link on my website and I can make an edit to the doc.  Best idea ever!

The third thing I love about my website is my page Grades and How to Improve. This is the first year I’ve been using Standards Based Grading.  This week marked the first week that students took a quiz on multiple learning goals (six learning goals, actually).  Some of their grades took a major hit as a consequence.  When grades take a hit – that means parent emails.  I’ve gotten so many emails that I decided I needed to somehow spend some time educating parents and students about the grading process.  I decided to put it on my school website, so that if I receive a parent email about grading in the future, I can just refer them to my school website. Someday I may publish it as a blog post, but for now – check it out on my school webpage.

2- Things I love about autumn

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Autumn in Utah is a short-lived, temperamental kind of thing. August was pretty cold and rainy, so the leaves are changing early this year. This last weekend I had about a million things to do on Saturday, but all I really wanted to do was go get lost somewhere. The best thing about living along the Wasatch Front in Utah is that I can drive about 5 minutes, hike for about 5 minutes, and be in the forested mountains.  Here are some pictures from the time I spent in Holbrook Canyon:

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I think I sat for about 20 minutes with my feet in the water, listening to the stream. I left feeling so renewed!

Beautiful Utah mountains!

Beautiful Utah mountains! Seriously, if you’re ever in Northern Utah, let me know. I’ll grab some friends and we’ll go for a hike or go snowshoeing.

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My new favorite place: Holbrook Canyon in Bountiful, Utah.

My other favorite thing about autumn is fresh produce. My parents had a bumper crop of tomatoes this year. I spent several hours at my parents’ home last Sunday listening to inspirational church talks and peeling tomatoes.  I popped the peeled and cored tomatoes into freezer bags and returned this weekend to make them into marinara sauce.  I just finished processing 12 pints of marinara sauce.  They sent me home with another 20+ pounds of tomatoes that are sitting on my balcony now waiting to be peeled.  Guess what I’ll be doing this week after school?

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1 – New Way to Use Colored Cups

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I wrote here about how my students use colored cups to signal a group question.  This week I had my students do an independent review assignment in preparation for the quiz on the following day. I gave each student a set of red, yellow and green cups.  Students were to work independently but to watch each other’s cups. When someone moved their cup to red or to yellow, they were to check in with that person and see if they could help.  If no one was able to help, then someone in the group signaled me by raising their hand.  I loved this system! It worked like gold. Always better if I can get the students helping each other.