School is great plus or minus a few off days. Today we played battleships in Algebra but instead using the traditional letter-number grid format, we practiced coordinate geometry. Instead of B4, for instance, they say (2,-4). We played boys-versus-girls. The losing team had a minor-league homework assignment over the weekend. My first period class had a nail-biter straight to — I’m serious — the last shot. Watch for the highlights on Sports Center, they were that crazy.
An example gameboard:
Last year, I was prompt to bed. Every minute awake past 2300 meant ten minutes the next day spent slowly zoning out in front of a pack of distracted Algebra students.
This year, I’ve gone several nights in excess of midnight and 2330 is kind of the norm. If I noticed any consequences I’d quietly readjust and find a little discipline about it but none so far.
At first I chalked it to a quieter, more subdued population. I think that still holds. These kids have so much less emotional baggage than the ones I left. But the largest issue, I think, is that I spend so much time pre-planning my lessons this year that I spend my actual in-class time pressing the button on my wireless remote, enthusing over concepts, entertaining, having fun. I’ve minimized paper passing-out, note-writing, overhead futzing-with, and technical drawing.
With Keynote, I dress-rehearse every lesson before I teach it. No wonder six hours a night is sufficient.