Balloons

In Geometry, I wanted my kids to re-think something they thought was true. That the sum of the (interior) angles of a triangle always was 180 degrees. So in the last 10 minutes of class, we blew up balloons and each drew a triangle on it with two right angles. They didn’t quite know that was what they were doing, and finally when they saw it, there were “OMG”s and “whoa, this is so cool.” It felt good to see some of them so excited. (I told them they should try to win a bet with their parents!)

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Today we had our first math club, and one of the three student leaders was sick. But the other two had a plan… Have students figure out the probability that in a group of 20 people, at least two people shared a birthday. So many excellent conversations happened. A few of the kids in my precalculus class last year showed up, and a few of the kids in my precalculus class this year showed up. Huzzah! All the kids were up and about. And my precalculus kids from last year got it and then I had them really grapple with the conceptual side of their algebraic work. In the middle of math club, we checked to see if our math team had won this week’s match (we play virtually, and the other team played the night before)… WE WON!

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I have noticed this, but haven’t pointed it out on this blog yet… A number of my kids, at the end of every class, say “thank you Mr. Shah.” In the past I’ve had this happen, but this year there are more than I’ve ever had before.

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I’m still at school now. It’s Friday, and it’s 8:37pm. But I wanted to get a lot of stuff done. And right now I’m in an office with one of the college counselors (who is, coincidentally, one of my friends). And working with her, and ducking out in the rain to get a quesadilla for dinner, was the only lovely social thing of my day.

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