I teach 7th grade math at a high-need, at-risk, predominately Spanish speaking college prep middle/high school. We have students from 6th grade through 12th grade. I have three math classes where I teach 3rd and 4th grade math skills to 7th grade students while teaching them the 7th grade standards. My goal is to have them reach grade level by the end of this school year.
Even though this is a college prep school, most of my students are way below grade level and they need all of the extra help and support possible to bridge the gap so that college can be an attainable dream.
Our seventh grade is comprised of 90 amazing students, many of whom come from bilingual households. Their goal is not only to make it to college but to finish college as well.
I call it, "The Competition." Each pair of students gets a white board, a dry erase marker and an eraser. I put problems on the overhead, they each work it out, write the answer on the white board and then hold it up for me to quickly say, "Correct or try again." They then erase and go on to the next problem as soon as they are finished. They are very competitive and work hard at doing as many problems as possible. It is amazing to see all of my students working and working fast.
My students work so much harder and they get so many more problems done just by using white boards and erasers (the erasers that we have now are old and torn).
It's almost magical. I know it's because they get to find out quickly if they are right. I am also able to easily see who is not getting it and help them right away instead of waiting to see what they don't get on the test. The more work they do the more they will learn.
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