We are spending this week doing some more review (which for most of my students I get the feeling it seems like the first time), but we also transitioning into more of what I plan on doing for their math classes. I spent some time over the weekend thinking about how I wanted to go about assigning grades in the class. I decided on more of a traditional approach and making participation a significant chunk of the grade. For me all participation means is that they are actively getting work done. Ideally I wouldn’t want to have to get students to participate by making it a part of there grade but after talking with students I am seeing that it is what motivates my students. It is because of that I have decided to make it a part of their final grade. My goal with this is to give students some credit for the hard work that they are doing even if they don’t get it right the first time.
I hope this helps my students participate more as it is still something we are struggling with. Somedays students work really hard and try to work through whatever we are doing. Other days, like today, it’s like pulling teeth trying to get students to work. I cannot figure out why this is. The activities that we do, I would say are all around the same engagement level and so far have been around the same level of mathematics. So then why are some days so much better than others? I don’t know if I can answer this question right now, but it is something I want to keep thinking about the rest of the year. I’m going to keep pushing through and enforcing the fact the classroom norms that we have talked about. I also have to keep reminding myself that this does take time and we are only in the 3rd week of school. I also think it will help too when everything really starts to get into the content of their course.