Thursday, September 25, 2014

Technology Thursday - TAPit app

I'm linking up with Teaching Trio for Technology Thursday!

My school is a 1:1 iPad school and we are all about tracking data. We give common assessments every 3 weeks and set goals for our kids based off of what they score on their assessments. We even have data spreadsheets that we have to update every three weeks to submit to our principal. For my classroom, I take data a step further and have my kids track their progress by standard. This is where My all time favorite app, TAPit, comes to play. 

TAPit, or the answer pad, has two components to it - a live interactive portion and a data portion. I'm going to brag on the data portion for tonight since I have pictures to show. TAPit is like a digital bubble sheet for the kids to record their answers. The awesome thing about this is the teacher can go to www.theanswerpad.com and set up an answer sheet. It can be multiple choice, true/false, or open response. 

Setting up an answer sheet.

How it looks like when you want to set up an answer sheet for multiple choice answers.

The best part - you can assign each question with a particular common core standard!

I love being able to assign each question with a standard because this is what I look at when I'm having my kids track their data. When students put their answers in, the data that it provides teachers is phenomenal! Take a look! My kids took an assessment yesterday!

You can look at the data three ways - look at the results (test grade), look at the analysis (item analysis, being able to see what questions students missed or got correct), and proficiency (gives you a cool looking graph to see which kids fall into needing intervention or which students are advanced).

This is the results page. For each students, it gives the percentage correct for the standards picked when you first set up the answer sheet. The last percentage is the students total score. Love being able to take a quick glance to see which standards I need to review back over.

This is the item analysis. I can see that I need to go back over #7 because the majority of my class missed this question.

This is pie chart to comes up when you look at the proficiency. If you click on the pie graph, it tells you specifically where students fall.

I can see from this that i need to work closely with the red, yellow, and orange students.

Using TAPit has seriously opened my eyes to a whole other side of data. It makes my life SO much easier, especially since I have my students track their data. Before I was having to sit down and figure percentages for each standard I tested on BY HAND! Now, I just set up an answer sheet and voila! It's super easy to use!

Until next time!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday Scoop 9-21-14



Good Morning! I'm linking up this morning with Teaching Trio for Sunday scoop!

3 Things I have to do-

1. Make my pre-test. I'm finally testing on my first unit this Tuesday! I play on giving my pre-test for my next unit on Wednesday, so I'm pushing it with not having it done! It's been crazy at school lately, so I haven't had much of a planning. And I've been sick the past couple of days, so I've done zero school work at home. But I'm starting to feel better now, so it'll get done!

2. Sub plans! My school is awesome - they allow each department to have one whole day off to meet as a department and get things done. They pay for subs to cover our class for the day and provide us lunch and snacks! This will be my first planning day session that I will facilitate since being asked to be department chair. I"m a little nervous, but I'm hoping it'll go well! I definitely have some things in mind that we need to work on during this day. We usually take half the day to work on common lesson planning and common assessments. I guess I need to add "Make an agenda" to this list!

3. Laundry. I've had a bad cold the past couple days so I've been laying around, letting laundry pile up. I'll definitely need to do laundry and disinfect the house so that boyfriend doesn't catch what I've had.

2 Things I hope to do-

1. Post stuff on TPT! I have so many products that I've made for my classroom, but I haven't had any time to post them on TPT! I really need to designate a day to do this. I don't want to get so behind that I forget!

2. I haven't left the house to go anywhere except school. I need fooooood!

1 Thing I'm happy to do-

1. Sims 4...My sims addiction usually comes in waves. I'll play for a while and then I'll go a couple months without playing. I've been a fan since I was in middle school and Sims 1 came out. I have every single Sims game, expansion pack, and stuff pack1 (I know, I'm crazy!) So of course, when Sims 4 came out, I HAD to have it. This is game is a big reason why I've been so unproductive! Ahhh! :)

Thanks for reading! I can't believe I actually posted two days in a row DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR! Whoo hoo! :)

Saturday, September 20, 2014

It finally hit me...

Back to school sickies...it finally hit me! We've had a lot of kids out recently due to kids being sick. I knew it was a matter of time before I got it and it finally hit me Thursday. I probably shouldn't have gone to school Friday because I had a slight fever, but I didn't want to take off because our school already had 6 subs in for the day. Hopefully the weekend will be good to me and I can be back to almost 100% by Monday.

As for class, we're finally at the end of our first unit in my math classes. When I gave my kids math surveys the first week of school, they all shared with me that they like being able to learn out of their seats (what middle school child doesn't?). This is why I love task cards so much! I can hang them around the room and the kids go at it. They love being able to work with their partners to solve each problem and even more so because they get to walk around. This was my room last week (my class of 31!)

I love walking around and hearing the conversations that my kiddos have!

And my favorite pic of the day:
I just love how that picture turned out!

These task cards were focused on Area of a Square. I knew that if I asked my kids how to find the area of a square, they were going to tell me A = lw. It happens every year. So I always have to teach them and remind them that they need to use A = s^2. Of course, I always have one student that says, "well, it's the same thing isn't it? because you're multiply the length and the width.". It's not until we start solving word problems in which you have to find a missing side length given an area that they truly understand WHY we need to use the correct formula. I love clearing up misconceptions! You can find these task cards here.

Alright, I'm off to take some meds and rest. Until next time! :-)

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Sunday Scoop!

I'm linking up with Teaching Trio for The Sunday Scoop! Thank goodness for fun linky parties like this - otherwise, my poor bloggy would be more neglected than ever!


3 Things I have to do:

1 - Boyfriend and I went to Raleigh/Durham yesterday just to get out of town and poke around. We had a blast! We went to Southpoint for the first time and it's so pretty over there! We will definitely be back! Saturday's are usually my planning days, so now I'm behind in finishing up this upcoming weeks plans. I will get them done after this post!

2.  Friday, my principal asked me to be math department chair this year. Although I am happy to help, I need to prepare myself for the workload that comes with it. We found out Friday afternoon that the dept. chairs needs to give a presentation at the staff meeting on Wednesday about the school EVAAS data that came back last week. Just so happens that the rest of my hall are dept chairs as well, so we will be working together to put this presentation together. Thank goodness for my awesome hall! My hall works so well together and we have fun doing so! I love them!

3. Grading papers. Ick. I remember when I was student teaching, I LOVED grading papers. Actually becoming a teacher ruined that for me lol. I absolutely hate it. Because we've been doing teacher walkthroughs during planning, meeting, and all of the above, my grading has gotten WAYYYY behind and progress reports come out on Tuesday (whoops). *sigh* I'll get it together one day.

2 Things I hope to do:

1. I need to blog! So many fabulous things happened last week in class and I've been taking pictures. Now I just need to find time to blog about it!

2. And this is why I"m so behind on everything outside of school! I have been a fan of the Sims franchise since I was in middle school and Sims 1 came out. I own every single Sims game and expansion pack since Sims 1. So of course, when Sims 4 came out last week, I HAD TO HAVE IT. Bad. idea. Now all I want to do is play! I'm hoping to zoom through this lesson planning so I have some time to play tonight before I have to go to bed!

1 Thing I'm happy to do:

1. It sounds extremely nerdy, but I am happy to analyze this data to explain to the staff what we need to do to improve. I guess it's because I'm a math teacher, but I just love analyzing data. Data is so powerful! And the most exciting thing to come from this, is seeing where our weaknesses were and coming up with a plan to implement so our data will be better next year! :-)

Monday, September 1, 2014

September Currently!

I look forward to this linky every month! I'm linking up with Farley for September Currently!


Listening - Boyfriend and I are thinking about re-doing our floors with laminate flooring. Right now we're leaning towards someone installing them, but he is researching on how to install them.

Loving - This extra day! The first week back is always draining, especially if you start the first week on a Monday! It's so nice to have this extra day to rest. My ankles and feet were definitely killing me by Friday! Plus, today I'm attending a friend's birthday cook out, so friends and food are always a plus.

Thinking - My lesson planning is done for next week, but I want to get ahead. My bellringers are not done though, so I need to get on that, especially since I want to post them on tpt!

Wanting - For September's earnings to exceed August! I can only hope for this! August was by far the best month I've ever, ever had! I usually set a goal and see if I can reach it. I had to raise my goal FIVE times! I love back to school time!! Seeing how well last month went definitely motivates me to work on more products for tpt and post them.

Needing - Which leads me into Needing! I have some things that I can post, but I've been way too lazy to make answer keys for them! Ahhh! I need to get it together! I also have some ideas for my store that I am excited about! I'll have to try really hard to hold it in until it's time to blog about it (when it's done!)!!!

3 Trips - To be honest, I am not a traveling gal. I get really bad car sickness even just riding down the rode if I'm not driving. But I would like to go to Hawaii, Bahamas, and NY. A couple teacher friends and I were talking about going on a cruise. I think that would be fun!!

I can't believe it's September already! I'm ready for the cool weather! Until next time! :)