As a math coach, often my day is spent in isolation looking at data, making plans, updating a website, and/or checking email. If I’m lucky, I get to spend time in the classrooms of the teachers I am coaching. I made it a goal when I started this position to be in classrooms as much as possible. Little did I realize how hard this goal would be sometimes. I’m often pulled in so many different directions, getting into the classrooms is tough, which I don’t like. I think I’m most effective when I know what’s going on in the classrooms with the teachers and especially the students.
So today, when I first walked in to the building, I was immediately asked to go cover a 7th grade math class! Yay! There was just one little issue, I didn’t get a chance to find out what I was supposed to be doing with the students because it was a last minute emergency situation. Luckily, because I had been planning with the teachers, I had an idea of something I could do with them. It was something I knew the classroom teacher was implementing.
On our second day back to school after break, our district had a PD day. One of the sessions I was lucky to attend was with the very talented Kim Sutton. She had shown us in the training about color coding factors on a number line. This was something she said need to start in elementary school, but that it wasn’t too late to introduce it to the middle schoolers. I knew the teacher whose room I was covering had started this project, so I just picked right up where she left off. Here’s an example of a finished number line.
As you can see, each number that has a factor of 2 has a red dot above it. Factors of 3 have a green dot and so on. It’s a great visual for the students and having them fill it out leads to so much great conversation. I had a wonderful time asking them to discover patterns. It was such a wonderful time interacting with the students! It was one GREAT thing today.