## Saturday, September 1, 2012

### New Bloggers Initiation - Week 2

Welcome to another exciting week of the New Bloggers Initiation! I am so excited to get to share more great blogs with you! Please take a few moments, read through these submissions, and leave a comment to welcome them to our community.

### Sarah Hill - You Can Secant You

Sarah Hill has a blog named "You Can Secant You". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "First Day of Calculus" and the author sums it up as follows: "This post describes the activity I did with my Calculus class on the first day of school. I wanted to jump right in a starting learning something important on the first day and I think this activity accomplished that."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "What I hoped they took away from this was a beginning understanding of using limits to find rates of change and some practice in graphing motion."

My response: I would have loved to be in Sarah's classroom! What a fun lesson, with so many take-aways! I think it would also be fun to team up with the physics teachers with this activity.

### Kevin Laxton - A Beginner's View of Math Education

Kevin Laxton (@LaxtonMath) has a blog named "A Beginner's View of Math Education". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "Generalizing (New Blogger Initiation Post 2)" and the author sums it up as follows: "This post is about what I'll call common sense generalizing. Connections exist between some things in the world, correlations if you will. And then there are things that are not correlated. It matters keeping the two straight."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "It's important that I impress upon my students a way of thinking that encourages them to see where connections exist between two things and where they don't exist. "

My response: I love xkcd! I hadn't seen this comic before, but I think a lot of discussion could come from it. Thanks to Kevin for sharing his toughts on this one!

### Kate - Axis of Reflection

Kate (@fourkatie) has a blog named "Axis of Reflection". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "I do not think this means what you think it means" and the author sums it up as follows: "This blog post is about a professional development session that was supposed to be about bullying prevention that turned out to be about conflict resolution. It includes some description of the high-point of the training which was some entertaining role-playing from actual scenarios we have experienced with our students in the past."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "While I can't say that every one has been essential, meaningful, and valuable to me, I can say that for the most part as a participant I feel my school's PD generally has the best of intentions to be purposeful and relevant to the school's needs and the needs of its students."

My response: I've "known" Katie for a while and I have to say this is one of my favorite posts of all times! We've all sat in those PD sessions where *our* perception of the topic and the *presenter's* perception of the topic are not quite in sync. And bonus points for the awesome scenerios!

### Brian Miller - Differentiating Differentiation

Brian Miller has a blog named "Differentiating Differentiation". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "What I Do When I Have a Bad Day" and the author sums it up as follows: "This post is about what I do to cheer up and get energized after having a tough day. I'm basically just providing a quote that is simple and beautiful and works for me, but leaving the philosphizing about it up to the reader."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "I definitely think part of classroom management is learning how to manage ourselves."

My response: Brian shares a quote in his post that I definitely plan to make into a poster before the weekend is up. Thank you to Brian for sharing!

### Robin Nehila - Flip!Learn!Share!

Robin Nehila (@radical_robin) has a blog named "Flip!Learn!Share!". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "My First Unit " and the author sums it up as follows: "My post is mostly about the assignment sheet (Layered Curriculum style) I made for my first 7th grade unit. It also talks about the new structure of my class. I am really excited about both!"

A memorable quotation from the post is: "I just knew that if I had left any of these things out this year or did not give my best effort in trying them I would be left with a big "What if?" floating around my head and I despise that feeling!"

My response: This is really cool and I am eager to hear more from Robin about how it works during the year. I love the idea of kids having more ownership and control in their grade.

### Ana Fox Chaney - Make Math

Ana Fox Chaney (@AnaFoxC) has a blog named "Make Math". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "Detective Work" and the author sums it up as follows: "I’ve been tinkering with ways to use these translucent polygons – a set of mostly triangles and quadrilaterals – in a way that is harder. Harder in a good way. Last year, I elected to scrap several of the usual lessons in favor of what I decided to call "Detective Work" - 5th graders would spend over a week creating visual proofs for angles in polygons."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "It includes the kinds of activities no one would continue doing if the teacher and school suddenly vaporized."

My response: After reading Ana's post, I really found myself wanting to join her class and see what else I could discover. When people talk about "literacy in math", they need to check out this post. Amazing work!

### Jeremy Loukas - Making Math Work

Jeremy Loukas (@jloukas) has a blog named "Making Math Work". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "Changes in linear graph exploration" and the author sums it up as follows: "
I love when an activity I make from scratch comes together. This activity seemed to connect with students and help them see how changes in linear functions look on a graph."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "Students enjoyed the random aspect of the problems..."

My response: I love this idea so much, I had to pin it on pinterest! :) I hope Jeremy doesn't mind if I steal his idea to use in my class next week!

### TJ Hitchman - Circles and Tangents

TJ Hitchman (@ProfNoodlearms) has a blog named "Circles and Tangents". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "Something I am proud of: an IBL Geometry Course" and the author sums it up as follows: "In the last 5 years I have totally transformed who I am professionally by learning to conduct an Inquiry Based Learning style classroom. My place for experimenting, and now kicking ass and taking names, is my Euclidean Geometry course. I thought I might share the beginnings of my "task sequence" to encourage others."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "So, Things are Going Swimmingly (with apologies to A.A. Milne)."

### Jeff de Varona - The Problem Bank

Jeff de Varona (@devaron3) has a blog named "The Problem Bank". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "The Original Random Problem Idea" and the author sums it up as follows: "Since I began using Problem-based Learning as my primary mode of instruction, I have been constantly on the lookout for random problem ideas. This is the very first problem idea I ever had that actually incorporated some of the qualities of a good problem. And for that reason, I'm proud of it. (There's also a Hemingway reference, so what's not to like?)."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "If I could take a mundane review topic and create a decent problem out of it…well I can do anything, right?"

My response: I think Jeff has hit the nail on the head with this post. I agree that it is far better to create your own problems, but that is still a struggle for many of us, including me. I do hope Jeff continues to post on this problem-making idea to help those of us that struggle!

### Mrs. W - Mrs. W's Math-Connection

Mrs. W has a blog named "Mrs. W's Math-Connection". This week's post for the Blogging Initiation is titled "Proud to Make them Practice" and the author sums it up as follows: "I have always loved creating my own classroom materials and in this post I share some of my favorite kinds of worksheets to create."

A memorable quotation from the post is: "My favorite types of worksheets to build are riddle puzzles and problem sets to use with VersaTiles."

My response: I have not used VersaTiles, but like Mrs. W, I also enjoy puzzles and riddles. Kids are more likely to do a worksheet with a corny riddle than one without :)