Friday, August 1, 2014

Keeping the Journals Closed

This method has proved to be long lasting and simple. 

Materials needed: 
  • scissors
  • two brads
  • duct tape
  • rubber band
  1. Using a pair of scissors, gently dig a small hole about an inch from the open edge halfway between the top and bottom of the journal. 
  2. Push the brad through from the front and secure the inside with duct tape.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 to the back cover. 
  4. Take the rubber band and  loop around the brad on the back cover. I twist the rubber band around the brad to help it stay.
  5. Pull the rubber band around to the other side and loop it around the brad on the front cover. 

Thursday, July 31, 2014


A tip I picked up in a session at a conference is that you can use paper bags as individual trash cans. There are pros and cons to the idea, but definitely worth sharing. I fold the top edge of the paper bag several times like I would when I cuff the sleeve of a shirt.
Paper Bags for Individual Trash Cans

A Place to Put Their Pencil

What do you do for that kid that never keeps up with a pencil?

All you need is a milkshake (jumbo) straw and some tape.
Jumbo Straw and Duct Tape


  1. Cut the straw in half.
  2. Fold over about a quarter inch of the end of the straw and wrap a small piece of tape around the end. (Reason: The pencil doesn't touch tape at the bottom because the end is folded over.)
  3.  Tape it down to the inside left cover of the composition book close to the spine. (Experience: Use tape and not staples. Staples through the cover will reap havoc on your hands. I have scars.) 

Pencil Holder
Advice: Place the pencil holder close to the spine and the less likely it is that the pencil flies out when the student closes their journal.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Save the date ♥ I'm getting married! Can you guess when?

After six wonderful years, my boyfriend proposed!! I'm getting married and I have the best wedding date ever!! Can you guess when I say I do?

Save the date ♥

Finding the Distance Revamped!

"Finding the Distance" foldable was requested in the form of a pdf.
Finding the Distance

I have typed it up and uploaded it as a word document (editable) and as a pdf. An answer key has been uploaded also. As always, printing can be tricky. I print "two sided along the short edge". After printed, you'll notice a dotted line along one short edge. Cut along the dotted line so that the foldable will fold up nicely.

First unfold reveals methods for distance off a slanted line along with using method 1. 

Second unfold reveals the use of method 2. 
The order of the methods did not hold a significance initially. I now teach the use of the Pythagorean Theorem first to bridge a connection the the distance formula.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Celebrating a Year in Blogging!! My Workshop Presentation at the Math and Science Symposium

A year ago today, I began sharing my experience with journaling and education. I have been given the privilege of giving another presentation at the Math and Science Symposium.

I wanted to share the material I presented. I selected several foldables by other bloggers to show that the material I use daily doesn't come from just me. My top Algebra resource is Math=Love.

I'm really proud of myself. Over this past year I have prepped more of my foldables and notes on the computer to cut time in class and presentations.

I have uploaded all but one of the pieces to as a PDF to my google drive. This google drive is shared with the public. It has the PDFs from not only my presentation but also almost everything else I have put together with my computer-bathroom passes, syllabi, journal notes, Spencer Henry Behavioral Management, etc.

I like to start classroom journals and presentations with a tangram puzzle.

All journals and presentations also include what I call a reference pocket on the inside left cover. This is where reference charts for standardized testing, calculator guides, etc. are kept. For presentations, this is where I place my "Journal Wizard" brochure.

Next thing that comes up in journals is a "Unit Pocket" that procedes a definite section of material. I also use journals for professional development.

The next page presented showed how a general page appears in our journals.

The left side is used for two main parts-lesson frame/objective and critical writing/reflection. This has been something I have been striving to complete in journaling. Providing students with a direct objective and incorporating writing and reflections. I'm still struggling to make this a routine in my daily teachings.

I use the right side for the lessons, foldables, assignments, etc. There are other methods suggested such as putting the writing on the left and the lesson material on the right.

I found it very beneficial this year to go over sets of real numbers. This is not a concept that is directly assessed on any standardized testing, but it is apart of the language that is used and seen.

I have seen and used a Venn diagram format in the past, but I really like to do a flip style foldable to make this concept more interactive. Math=Love has a printable format without the flaps.





It's not prefected but it is a start.

Next page: Function Machine

I find it very important to demonstrate what a function is when refered to as a machine.

I use this Youtube video "Meat-A-Morphosis" to introduce functions. The kids get a kick out of it!

I tried to put the idea of a function machine into a pull tab foldable.

Then pull the green tab down to demonstrate the input of six and the ouput result.

Next up is a foldable that I spent hours trying to get the shape placement right. It is still not perfect, but demonstrates the relationship between the most popular quadrilaterals. The only one that I couldn't work in was a rhombus even though a square is a rhombus. This foldable can make a square, rectangle, right angle trapezoid, isosceles trapezoid, and parallelogram. If you would like a copy in Word to perfect the arrangement, send me an email and I'll send you a copy. Just be sure to share it back. :)

The next foldable is a steal from Math=Love. I typed it up completely to progress the pace of my presentation and provide a quick reference for Algebra 2 students. I can share this by email also so it can be edited.

I love this foldable on the Coordinate Plane. I adapted an idea from Region 15 consultant Marifrances and Math=Love posted a template for it. This can be created without a template by first cutting a square, second folding into sixteen squares, third cutting off each corner, and fourth cutting the two squares around the edge into two flaps.

The next foldable is for ordered pairs. I would look on Math=Love for a better illustration of how she taught and used it. I haven't used this in class yet and I ran out of time for my presentation.

Next up, Domain and Range. This is quickly becoming my new favorite thing to teach. Domain and Range was one concept that I didn't get until I started teaching. I struggled through college and had no idea what it was in high school.

I borrowed this acronym from Math=Love and turned it into a similar foldable as HOY VUX.

I pair this foldable that defines Domain and Range with one that is used as a tool for identifying the Domain and Range of a graph.

We use highlighters to identify the domain and range. This foldable is an amazing tool that helps kids understand and relate that domain is the vertical boundaries identified by the values of a horizontal axis and vice versa for range.

Thank you for your time! Share thoughts and comments!! It's been a wonderful year and still psyched to keep sharing.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Giant Cookie is our Pi Day Tradition; What's Yours?

I am not a pie maker or eater. Pies are just something I didn't grow up on. Tragic, I know.

A wonderfully brilliant educator I know introduced me to an amazing recipe for a giant chocolate chip cookie. This was a tradition when she taught all the students I am currently teaching now years ago. She would make a giant cookie each month celebrating their birthdays. I've started a new tradition for them in high school. We have giant cookies with ice cream and games in celebration of Pi Day.