First 6 Weeks in Algebra 1

Here is the first six weeks update that I promised! I have two Algebra 1 classes this year. One class has 16 and the other class has 11. Both classes are last period of the day and if you know anything about teaching math last period of the day, it can be a struggle. The students are tired and so am I, but it really has been pretty good so far.

We have been able to get through these topics:

I’ve linked the topics to some of my lessons and worksheets that I used in my TpT store, but as I see the need, I go find content in other places. My district uses a couple of resources that I pull from as well, but our students know how to find answers online for these assignments, so I don’t like to use them for homework.

If you’ve never used, you should try it. The kids really enjoy doing these. I like that the students can do them more than one time. I have the students show work in their journal. Basically it’s just a digital quiz with 4 answer choices. These are teacher-made and there are a ton to choose from on just about every topic.

My most favorite digital resource during the first 6 weeks has been Boom Learning. If you like task cards, then you will love Boom Cards. Again, these cards are teacher-made. There are a variety of ways kids can answer questions. I started creating my own decks. I used two of my own creations the first six weeks. One set of Boom Cards covered patterns and how to write an expression from a pattern. The other set was for practicing solving equations and inequalities. The kids can go through them as many times as they want so they get a lot of practice and get the best grade possible. To use Boom Cards, you need a teacher account. The free account is perfectly fine, but you don’t get to see the reports. The best thing to do is to get a paid account which is only $15 – 35 dollars a year depending on which plan you choose. Make your own decks or purchase decks. There are free choices as well. Click here to go check out my store. I’m brand new at making these, but I can already tell that this will be something I work on because all of my classes love Boom Cards!

Three things have been accomplished this six weeks:

  1. The students 8th grade scores have been viewed. I know how they did on the 8th grade STAAR. I have two students that did not pass the 8th grade STAAR after three tries. One student had a raw score of 9. Just like last year, I have my work cut out for me. Only 1 person mastered the test.
  2. The students did not touch a calculator the first six weeks. This of course was on purpose. They struggled through all of the equations, expressions, patterns, and order of operations without it. I gave them 4 quizzes over number sense, hoping they would eventually make an 80. Sixteen out of 28 students made the 80.
  3. Students were encouraged to do corrections and retest! For every test, the students could do corrections no matter if they failed or not. The students that failed the test, were able to retest. On assignments, students could do corrections if they failed. For quizzes, students could also do corrections if they failed. It’s amazing how many students did not take advantage of this!

It’s time to dive into tutoring. I know the students better now. The two students that did not pass the 8th grade test, did not pass the first six weeks of Algebra along with 6 other students. I’m letting them use the calculator this six weeks, so that will probably help them. I WILL NOT let them use N-solve until we get closer to the test.

The next time I talk about my Algebra class, it will be the end of the 2nd six weeks. Here are a few things I hope to accomplish:

  1. Start using STAAR-like test questions on the tests.
  2. Recycle information covering the first six weeks through practice sheets.
  3. Tutor the weak students.
  4. Do at least one Flipgrid.

Come back in about 6 weeks or so to see how things went. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. I wish you the best, the next six weeks.

Happy Teaching!

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Math teacher dedicated to sharing teacher tips, ideas and resources.

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