Odds and Ends

Just a few things that have been percolating in this teeny tiny brain of mine lately....

1.  One of my precalc kids asked yesterday why synthetic division works.  Although I love doing the process (hate long division!) I'd never really considered why we could do it. To compare the two division strategies, I wrote a problem and worked them out side by side. And you know what?  They're really the same.  Magical.  One of our Algebra 2 teachers here doesn't like synthetic division (because it only works in minimal situations, he says, even though I gave him a document to show him otherwise) and therefore doesn't teach it. Drives me nutso.

2.  We're getting ready to hit complex numbers tomorrow in precalc. Although the kids normally "hate" i's (why is that?!), I've enjoyed delving into the world of fractals a bit the last couple of years.  I set up a google site for the kids to work from and this year will be adding in some paper folding, too. I'm pretty pumped about it.  And instead of having them fill out a paper with what they've learned, I put a gform on the site for them to enter in their information. Coolness.  (I've had these sitting out all week and the kids are dying to make them. Even my general Algebra 1 kids asked if they could do some after their quiz today!)

3.  My birthday was yesterday, and it was a pretty good one!  It was nice to get those birthday greetings on facebook, but the kids at school found out, too, and I ended up with a cupcake by the end of the day. :)  It bled over to twitter, too, so I received some nice greetings there, too. And even an ecard from Sam!  Plus, I got an itunes giftcard from one friend, a piece of cake from another, and a pumpkin Reese's cup from a third. Bonus!

4.  I've used Educreations a few times on my iPad to create screencasts  of me working out some problems that I think the kids might have issues with. Yesterday after school I talked through 5 or so from a review worksheet that the precalc kids had before today's quiz. I posted the video to Schoology along with the answers to the worksheet.  One girl, upon arriving in class today, came up to my desk and was like, "Thanks so much for the video! It really helped." It's so nice to have them be thankful for stuff we do around here!


  1. Fouss, how did you embed that document from box.com ? I definitely need to steal that.

  2. Elissa - If you are viewing a document in your box account (click on the name of the doc in your list to open it up) on the right side you'll see an "embed" option. Click on that to get a code to paste in!

    I still have stamp pads to send you. So sorry. I'll go to the post office today, I promise! :)


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