Monday, July 29, 2013

#Made4Math Monday!

It's been a looong time since I've done a #Made4Math and I don't know if I'll ever do one again, so when I started working on this project last night I thought I'd take advantage of it!

I have two elementary-aged children who bring home pencil boxes full of broken crayons (and markers and pencils and all kinds of other stuff) at the end of each school year. Yesterday my daughter and I sifted through those boxes, pulled out the "keepers" and bagged up the pieces.  I've seen pictures of things that people have done with old broken crayons and thought I'd give one a try.

One of my students got me this pi ice cube tray this year:
I couldn't imagine that I would ever actually make pi ice cubes, so I repurposed it (after first checking to make sure the silicone would be ok in the oven).

I peeled (ugh) and cut up some crayons and filled up the pi's. I chose to go multi-colored, but it would also be really cute with just complimentary colors.

Then I popped the tray (on an aluminum-covered cookie sheet) in the oven at 250 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

After I let it cool for a few minutes I popped the tray in the freezer overnight. The pi's weren't too bad to get out of the tray today, but I was happy that the silicone bent a lot - it made things much easier.

Aren't they cute?  There was a ledge around the top that I ended up scraping off with a knife.  

A few observations:
1.  The pi's look better flipped over.  The colors look cooler. 

2.  Did you notice that there were 12 spots in the tray and only 10 pi's are pictured?  I broke a couple getting them out.  But I wasn't too bummed about it because the broken pieces made tau's!

And last but not least,
3.  What am I going to do with 10 pi crayons and 2 tau crayons?! :)

Sunday, July 28, 2013

My Diigo Tags (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


I'm starting to look for resources to help out whatever it is that my new job is going to be.

Some things I've found lately that I think look promising (I'm putting them here both to share and so I can find them again later!):

1.  Edudemic's "The Teacher's Guides to Technology and Learning"
A collection of resources for teachers from Twitter to Flipped Classrooms to Keeping Students Safe Online to Choosing Digital Content.  Plus some.

2.  Tech Coach Wiki
There's not a ton there yet.  I'm hoping that it's being developed.  Still, some links that look promising.

3.  #TechCoach Tagboard
I've never seen Tagboard before, but it looks like a cool way to collect twitter hashtags.  This specifically is the #techcoach one. Maybe I'll create a #TMC13 one for the next few days... or maybe I'll avoid it. (Still sad.)

4.  Edutech for Teachers
A blog dealing with using technology in the classroom.

5.  Cool Tools for the 21st Century Classroom
Like I've said before (I think), I'd like to send out a weekly email describing a tool that can be used in classes. This may be a good collection for me to sort through.  The goal is to find things applicable to all departments.  (I chose Google Forms for week 1 and Remind101 for week 2. I have no idea where these teachers are but I thought these would be good ones to make sure they know about.)

6.  School Signs from Technology Rocks Seriously
I found these last night; I think this is a middle school teacher but she's spent a lot of time and is very generous is freely sharing her work. I love fonts and colors, so this is right up my alley.

7. 30 Ways to Use Chromebooks in Education from Educational Technology and Mobile Learning (that's a mouthful!)
We're going to have 250 Chromebooks available to students to check out on a daily basis. It will be nice to have resources for teachers so they know what the machines can do.

I favorited this quote from Twitter the other night. It just spoke to me.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

My Diigo Tags (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

My Diigo Tags (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Like I alluded to in my last post, I'm kind of at a loss of what I should be doing this summer. Normally I'd be scouring the web and looking for new project ideas or trying to wrap my mind around the new Math 1 course that we're offering this year. 

Instead, I'm going to the pool with my kids and reading a bunch of novels. And feeling guilty about leaving my old job. And getting anxious about starting a new job. 

I did decide to make my husband happy today - the kids and I gathered up a bunch of my school stuff that was sitting on the dining room floor and took it into my new office. I didn't unpack much; I want to go in and clean and sort first, but it's making this whole job change more of a real thing. 

The weird thing is that I feel like I have to make a new place for myself on twitter, too. The math community - my friends - have been such a big part of my growth the past few years, yet now I need to stretch beyond that. Is there a big Tech Integration cohort? I'd imagine there is, and I've started finding new people to follow, but it's going to take time for me to feel comfortable and start jumping in. 

It reminds me of that song we sang in Girl Scouts:  (well ok, I quit when I was in Brownies, but still...)

Make new friends but keep the old. One is silver and the other's gold. 

And now I'll be humming that all day.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

My Diigo Tags (weekly)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Plans (or lack thereof)

I haven't blogged in a while. This is the summer that I really should be blogging and planning and trying to figure out what I want to do this year, but I'm stuck.

I don't know what I want to do. I feel aimless. 

My problem is that so much is new about my new job. No one (that I've spoken to, anyway) knows what it's going to look like. I feel like I need some structure, and I don't have it yet. 

I'm definitely putting that on me. I need to be proactive about what I think is best for me and my new school. I need to think like a teacher (which I still consider myself) to help plan for what I want to offer. 

I have accomplished a couple of things.  I put together a google site to collect all of my diigo links - it's weird looking for all kinds of curricular resources instead of just math! It took me some time playing with diigo and finding a way of posting HTML to a google site to get what I wanted, but I enjoyed the process (which gives me good vibes about this job).

 I set up a calendar on the site with appointment slots representing all of the different class times during the day so that teachers can schedule their own library time. I'm hoping they'll embrace the ability to do this; I know I would have! Previously to get a class into the media center we'd have to go down and check with the specialist to get a class scheduled in. Doing this online will give teachers the opportunity to see from their own computers what periods are available and to schedule them when they're doing lesson planning, because we all know that doesn't always take place at school. 

I'm trying to figure out how I want to get information out to teachers. I was thinking of a weekly "official" email with cross-curricular tools. I just read about the idea of setting up one afternoon a week in the media center after school to present a tool in person. What worries me about that is trying to find one day that isn't already taken up with meetings. So maybe both? I send out an email with a tool and schedule a day when I would be available to present in person. Something to think about. 

I found a new blog (to me) that I'm hoping to get a lot of ideas from.  Check it out! It's called The Techy Teacher Librarian. 

The good news? It's only July 2 and I have time to figure stuff out. 

The bad news? It's only July 2 and I have a lot of time to worry about how it's going to work.