There is an online initiative for math educators to connect more closely online and share ideas and successes and failures: ExploringTheMathTwitterBlogosphere.
I am no longer in the classroom as a math teacher, but I’ll participate anyway!
I currently work for a non-profit called City Year, which places young adults in high-needs schools to do targeted tutoring and mentoring to keep kids on track to graduate. City Year “corps members” are partnered with a teacher whose students they work with full time as a second educator in the classroom.
In my position, I coach and support a team of City Year corps members within one particular school (across all subject areas). I also coach and support all of the City Year corps members throughout the city who are placed in math classrooms.
In the first prompt, in ExploringTheMathTwitterBlogosphere, educators are asked to share either our favorite open-ended/rich question and how it is or will be implemented OR to share what makes our classroom environment uniquely ours.
I struggle to answer either of those questions.
I’d love to help my corps members expose students to lots of rich questions. However, this is a struggle due to our role in support of the (heavily scripted and very fast-moving) curriculum which leaves no room for most deep learning. I’ll work on trying to find time out of class (after school?) for our corps members to work with students on these types of thought-provoking questions, but I’m certainly open to additional ideas, as well!
Since our corps members each serve within another teacher’s classroom, the question about how to make the classroom environment uniquely their own is particularly intriguing. Without stepping on the teachers’ feet, I’ll challenge my corps members to figure out what makes their service distinctive and personalized (different than their teachers and different than their fellow corps members).