Home > Choices, Goals, Reflection, Teaching > Finding my place

Finding my place

I still don’t feel in control in my lesson planning.  Transitioning from a fully independent, 4-week unit approach to a team-planned week-at-a-time approach has been very hard on me.  In math, especially, I feel out of step with my team and with the specialists.  I want to start out much slower, emphasizing number sense, problem solving, and understanding.  The team values these goals too, but our planning tends to bypass hard conversations in favor of daily activity planning.  To me, the end result feels random – a collection of things to do rather than a careful building of mathematical understanding.

Oddly, I started out writing this post because I was feeling better about our math planning.  In today’s meeting I brought some ideas to the table, pushed for us to focus on foundational skills, and got at least one co-worker on board with my thinking.  At this point, I’d say I’m still feeling a little lost and out of control, but I also feel like I can find ways to carve out space for my own math curriculum within my classroom.  If I want to use ten-frames and I can find the time, no one’s going to try to stop me.  If I’m being really ambitious, I think my next step would be to plan out my idea of how the next several weeks should run, propose these ideas in our meetings, and implement as many of them as I have time for.  It’s a little exhausting to think about doing that much independent planning on top of the school day and my freelance work, but I think it would make me feel more confident and competent.  Teaching math was one of the highlights of my student teaching experience and I’d like to get back the feeling that I can really teach kids to think and to have fun with math.

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