So what is my plan...
Step 1 - Make a bridge between home life and school life
Call home to speak with parents about upcoming year and request two things: a family photo to remind students of their support system and a letter of encouragement to the child to be presented in the first week of school.
Step 2 - Take a class photo
The first week of school I want to take a photo of each class to post in our room. I'm thinking maybe on the first day have them make posters with encouraging messages and then we can hold them up in our photo. My idea is maybe have the journalism teacher take the photo of each class out on the football field.
I want to have a place where our students can share math beyond just the four walls of my classroom. I want them to create a professional learning network like the #MTBoS is for us.
My thoughts are that instead of homework I'll give out one problem per night maybe in class or over twitter and students that want to join in can and post their problems to our class account. The next day I want to use those problems to choose "my favorite no" problem to reinforce error analysis. I'm hoping that students will see this as it's ok to make mistakes and the point is I want them to try. I might use the slogan "no one ever learned to ride a bike without falling off" in my class this year. I want them to get away from the fear of answering wrong and working closer to being confident in the attempts.
Step 4 - Choosing at least one good thing and calling home about it weekly (maybe 3 students - start small and work my way up over time)
It is so important to call parents to tell them that their child did something good but often times we get overloaded and only call when a student has done something wrong. I want to change this now instead of later. Make time Christie!!!
Step 5 - Make scheduled tutoring a priority
One semester I called home every few weeks to ask parents if their child could stay after school for tutoring and I want to do this again. Our school now has title one funding and we are using a portion to fund after school tutoring for EOC and ACT prep. If possible I want to see if I can bring in more students from my other classes to get help.
The biggest thing is just being their for my students. They need to know someone is in their corner and not going to give up on them.