My clinical took place at Daniel Webster Middle School. Webster is a Milwaukee Public School serving grades six, seven, and eight. For my clinical, I worked with Ms. Karen Rinka. With her, I was involved in two math classes and Second Step, a violence prevention program. My focus for this journal was individualization and grouping.
February 4, 1997 Today the class worked on scoring example papers. The students were first given five minutes to score the papers themselves. Then they were given three minutes to discuss it with a partner close to them. Finally, the whole class discussed.
February 11, 1997 The class reviewed an assigned fraction conversion worksheet that was given out last week. The students that did not have it finished worked with me in the back room. In that class, we worked on how to visualize the problems as well as simplification techniques.
February 18,1997 During the Second Step program, the class used a couple of groupings. One was to have a large group lecture. After that, the students got into pairs. In the pairs, the students discussed emotions and worked on a worksheet.
February 25, 1997 The class started today by doing mind gymnastics. During mind gymnastics, the students listen to questions that are previously taped. This allows the questions for the assignment to be timed to take 15 minutes. To check the mind gymnastics, papers are exchanged and the tape provides answers to the problems.
March 4, 1997 To start things off today, the class did a Warm ↑, a series of ten questions. The students received ten minuets to complete these problems. The rest of the class period was used to work on the newest problem solving adventure, "Return To Glory." I took three students who were falling behind in the class and worked with them to help with the problems. As the rest of the class worked silently, we worked the problems aloud and used the chalkboard as well as other props.
March 11, 1997 During this week, Milwaukee Public Schools held their standardized testing. Most of the students worked in the main classroom. A few of the students that normally cause disruptions were placed in a separate room to work. Some of the better students were assigned extra duties. These included jobs passing out journals and calculators. These students were given extra "values."
March 18, 1997 The next installment of The Math Game was worked on. The students worked by themselves and then discussed it as a class. In Second Step, students were chosen to perform role-plays. Based on the studentís actions, the rest of the class had to try to fill in the worksheet involving the role-played character.
March 25,1997 Due to the placement of Spring break, I had an unique opportunity to spend an entire day at Webster. And what a day it was. Because of growing tension around the school, the 24th was a "lock-down" day. This meant that the students stayed in the same classroom with the same teacher all day. The students mainly do busy work, quietly in their seats. Because of this, today was a partial lock-down. This meant that the students stayed in the same classroom all day but teachers rotated and taught. Because of this, the students worked only individually at their own desk.
April 17, 1997 To start the class today, the students did a mind gymnastics exercise. This involves the students listening to problems from a cassette tape and then answering them. After they were done, the students exchange papers and grade each others. Later while working on a problem solving adventure, Ms. Rinka called for volunteers to come up and show work on an overhead.
April 22, 1997 At the beginning of class, the students did a Warm ↑. Todayís was a series of 15 addition problems. The students had ten minutes to complete these problems by themselves. After that, Ms. Rinka called on volunteers to come up to the overhead project and show their work and answer. After an answer was up, the class voted whether or not they thought that the answer was correct. If it was not correct, another student was called up to try it. I also made a copy of a mind gymnastics tape, a part of which is included below.