The opener today is designed to build off the work we did on Friday as well as the video they watched for homework.
After they work on the openers individually, and then in their table groups, we'll discuss them as a class. Then today's lesson is to look at ratio, proportion and percent in the context of a sampling problem. We'll begin with a 3.5 minute video from Discovery Education on the Capture-Recapture Method of estimating animal populations. After watching the video we'll simulate the capture-recapture method using paper bags and two colors of beans (in the context of sampling fish at a nearby reservoir).
After working through the simulation, we'll then see if it took hold by completing three sample "application" problems. Assuming that goes okay, we'll then talk about how we could sample our class to try to predict answers for the entire school (or a class across the hall). The "freshmen" question is designed to get them thinking about what a good sample might look like (since my class is majority freshmen, this is not a good sample for the school, but might be for an Algebra class at the school). (Note: On all these images keep in mind that they are on a smart board and I'm using the window shade to control how much is visible at one time.)
If we have time, we'll then conclude with a quick skill review..
We'll then talk briefly about their homework for tonight, which is to complete the Solving Proportions and Percents Online Pre-Assessment. My plan is to use these in a very similar way to the way I did last year. Usually two class periods before an assessment I'll have the students complete a sample online pre-assessment. This gives them an idea of how they'll do on the actual assessment and gives them some time to get help/figure it out before the assessment that "counts." I ask them to write down the problems in their notebook and work them out, then click on "Check Your Work" to see how they did (and correct if necessary). I'll also give them an optional link if they'd like more practice, but it is completely optional.
A second piece of homework, but one that's not due until Friday (four days from now), is their first reflection piece:
Looking back at your first week in Algebra (and, for some of you, your first week at AHS), how are you feeling? What's going well or you're excited about? What's challenging or are you concerned about? Then I want you to set three goals for yourself for this semester. One goal specifically related to Algebra, one goal related to AHS in general (can be related to classwork, sports, activities, or something else at AHS), and one goal outside of AHS. Make these goals fairly specific, not just "I want to get a good grade." I'll be asking you to revisit these goals toward the end of the semester and evaluate how well you're doing on them, so make them be worthwhile and achievable.Last year we did this in Google Docs, but this year I've decided to go ahead and have them blog them. I debated about whether I wanted these private (in Google Docs, so that they could perhaps be more honest and share more information), or public (Blogger, where they might feel somewhat constrained because it's public). Last year I really didn't have anything shared that I think wouldn't have been if they'd been public, so I want to open this up for all the usual reasons for why blogging can be powerful. I'll also let the students know that if they have anything they'd like to share but not publicly, to just let me know.
I'm a little worried that's too much homework, but I figure the pre-assessment only takes 10-15 minutes and the reflection isn't due until Friday (and they have Thursday "off" of Algebra), so I'm hoping it's not too bad.
As always, I'd appreciate your thoughts/suggestions on any of the above.