I realize now that the lesson plan communicated at best little information about what happens in my classroom, and at worst a disorganized teacher.
I am not disorganized, even as my classroom can sometimes seem chaotic. I know where I want to start, and I know what my goals are. What happens along the way is often a mystery to me until it happens -- not unlike an improv performance. I've seen many teachers write of the importance of "yes, and..." in a classroom, and I will add myself to those voices. If I am offering up "yes, and..." it means students are guiding what we are doing. I need to be flexible and quick on my feet, but those are my strengths. (And also my weaknesses -- sometimes "flexible" becomes "taking a random unnecessary tangent that distracts." I continue to grow and learn, though. But, predictably, I digress.)
So to my first day plan. It was inspired by this vSauce video .(The relevant section starts at about minute 14).
I'll shuffle a deck of cards (at least seven times) and claim that never before in the history of cards has a deck been in the exact order I've created.
Students are to agree or disagree and defend their answer.
- Discover that n! describes the number of ways to order n things.
- Review of scientific notation.
- What mathematical rigor looks like.
- How to accept something that violates your intuition.
- How to resist using the internet to solve problems.
Students will work alone, then in groups, and then we will .... improvise! I know that kids will stand and move and talk to different people and have cards and whiteboards available if they want. In the end, each student will have to write a summary and defense of their answer using mathematics. Our first class period is 30 minutes, so we'll see how far we get. I suspect we can finish sometime during the second class. Then, we're off!