Sunday, December 16, 2007

More Puzzle Fun?

I passed out a 16 piece puzzle on the topic of Trig Identities last week and I was wondering if anyone has tried that puzzle yet? Are you having any luck? I want you to remember that I told the class it was difficult. It took me a few hours to complete so I expect it will take my students longer than that. You should ask each other for help and maybe get a group together after school to work on the puzzle. If you need help from me, I am available after school Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday this week. If you get frustrated with the puzzle then you need to take a break and come back to the puzzle at a later time. Don't take too long of a break because the puzzle is due before the year 2008.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Happy Holidays

Like the song states… “It’s the most wonderful time of the year…” well, it is for me. I love so much about Christmas time. I like the music, the lights and decorations, the shopping, college football bowl games and the school vacation. I just came home from Christmas shopping and all I can think is only 18 more days until Christmas. The next thought I have is “oh no” I still have so many presents I want to buy for people. I know this blog has nothing to do with Pre-Calc class, but I am easily side tracked this time of year. Talking and writing about the holiday gets me excited. It is a good thing that I have such wonderful students to keep me on track when I am in class so I don’t spend the whole period talking about the holiday. If you enjoy this time of year and you enjoy watching the TV Christmas specials, you will have to read the blog of Mr. Paulus.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Puzzle Fun

Do you like to do puzzles? I have so much fun with puzzles (I wish I had more free time that I could sit and do puzzles). I think that is why I enjoy the current topic in Pre-Calc class, Trig Identities. They are just like puzzles. You try one piece or one identity and if that doesn't work then you try another. You keep trying until you find one that fits and allows you to simplify the expression. You have to have patience with this. As we learn more identities we will have more puzzle pieces to try and it will take longer. I hope you are ready for some fun. If you have never liked puzzles before, maybe I can change your mind. By the way, we have a puzzle project coming up before Christmas break.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Self Evaluation

One thing I do to improve my teaching is self evaluation. After each class I make notes of what went well and what I have to improve on for the next time. I think students need to do the same thing to become better students. Today you took a test on trig topics. You should ask yourself how that went. What did you do while studying that helped you? Make note of that so you do the same thing next time. Did you study enough? What can you do for the next test that will make you even more successful? I want all my students to want more. Don’t be satisfied with minimum achievements. Reach as high as you can.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The end of term 1

We have completed 1/4 of the Pre-Calculus curriculum. What do you think about the class? Is it as hard as you thought back in early September? Do you think the work load is heavier or lighter than your previous math classes?
I love teaching Pre-Calculus. I feel this class brings so many tools from previous classes together. Now I know why I had to learn topics like factoring (so I can find the asymptotes for graphing a rational expression).
Take some time to think about the class and let me know your thoughts.