Thursday, September 21, 2006


Firstly, I finally got my 'math is delicious' shirt. It was worth the 3 month wait, I can't wait to wear it.

Secondly, something is going right in the world of math. Years of hearing what a terrible job elementary teachers were doing in the math department, and then seeing the results in my gr9 classes seems to be no longer fact. The majority of my grade nines are so very well prepared! They've seen almost all of the current content in some form or another, and are able to link previous knowledge to the new stuff. Awesome.

I love the program the public system uses for Math 9. Sure, it's the same curriculum, but the ressource is wonderful. Sometimes too wonderful (seriously, the author is one wordy dude). Here is the problem. My grade 10s are too well prepared. Everything we have done is review. Not the good kind of review where you add some new twist to an already familiar thing and make it slightly more difficult. Nope, the redundant crappy kind of review where they are all super geniuses and are pretty bored. Ack! If I were super teacher, I'm sure I would make wonderful new ressources and challenge them somehow. I'm not. I'm already developping one course from scratch that has a shitty ressource (confusing and no answer key), and changing all my grade 9 stuff to match the new to me program. I don't get enough sleep as is.

What I want to know is how curriculum people think that this is good for students. Now wonder they all think math sucks, I do too right now. I also know we're in for another 2 weeks of review before we get into any new to them material. What to do? Do I make an executive decision to review at top speed and then test them? Teach only what is needed in detail and call it good? Continue to follow curriculum the way it is set up and bore everyone to tears for the next few weeks? The students don't really mind as there's little homework and I'm guessing it makes them feel good about their skills. I have a new and improved text coming my way (someday) and I know it does get better. There's only so much time I can put into this as my gr12 course HAS to take priority since they're writing a departmental. It just feels wrong to coast along in such simplicity. Do I make them teach it to one another for interest? I wish I would have known I was getting such capable students and could have planned a little better for this earlier...



Not So French Girl said...

The Math shirt makes me laugh. At you. I have had three parents tell me math is too hard. I thought of you and the crappy elem teachers and said too bad, suck it up and get to work. Teach fast if they are bored. There's always more to learn !

bag marla said...

I agree to teaching fast if they already know what's going on. And I agree with getting them to teach one another, that's always fun.

But, yeah, I'm not a teacher, so what do I know?