Tag Archives: Classrooms


My colleagues and I decided to enrich our CMP 3 curriculum with one of Cathy Fosnot’s Math in Context Units, Best Buys, Ratios and Rates. It has been a rewarding experience and changed the way that I think about teaching.

One thing I have regained is the benefit of “struggle.” Students that are willing to struggle are able to gain more from a problem than students that insist on having an answer first. It is sometimes tempting to teach what students need to know before they have had this experience.

I have always enjoyed teaching this way, but time constraints and the need to finish the standards in a timely way often scare me into a different teaching style. I gave my students some extra time today. I wanted to finish the problem and share out by the end of the class period today, but students were engaged and learning. I let them go on with the problem for the whole period. One student looked at me so excited and said, “I’m so excited, it feels so good to struggle and then get it.” She had just discovered what I was trying to teach. I didn’t do any of the talking, she did all of it and she learned!

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Today was one of those days, well actually, maybe it was yesterday. It was one of those days I question if I am really moving forward. School starts in two weeks, and I was told yesterday that my classroom is moving and I have vacation plans with my family beginning tomorrow until the day before school starts. I know, poor planning, but my room was ready to go.

Now, I have to start over. I went in today and took everything off the walls. I undid every bulletin board, and emptied every closet and shelf. I can’t even start to move into my new room because it is a disaster. No, actually a disaster, things attached to the floor disaster. It was one of those days.

I didn’t want to write this post. I’m trying to be more positive. I had all these really great ideas. I was ready to start and now I can’t even remember what they are. It’s a good thing I wrote them down in this blog.

Now that I’ve started writing, I can go back and read about the better days. I can read about the triumphs and great ideas.  I think that’s how I’m going to deal with the days that are …., well you know.

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