• musings

    segways & accomplishments

    Yesterday I went to my first class at Pure Barre. Having gone to Exhale and Bar Method, I was curious about the differences at Pure Barre.  The class structure was extremely similar, but I found some different teaching inspiration. 1) Accounting for Transitions and Organizing Materials Saves Time – At Exhale, the weights and straps are stored in the back corner of the studio in bins on the floor. If all students arrive in a staggered way, then collecting these items before the start of class is pretty easy. Pure Barre has the weights organized on shelves right outside of the studio with the numbers facing out, so that you can grab…

  • Uncategorized

    standing desk

    My coworker sent me this article about the benefits of standing over sitting. The New York Times has also recently examined the newfound popularity of standing desks. I’m intrigued…I feel like I’m two inches shorter and starting to have extremely bad posture and low energy. Two years ago I tried to bring in a Swiss ball to replace my desk chair, but that routine didn’t stick. I somehow figured out a way to sit on the ball while slouching. Our school’s desk are huge steel behemoths that will last until the 2050’s, so I doubt we will be getting rid of them any time soon. In fact, the $22 LifeHacker…

  • instruction,  musings

    the most guts

    Today Tufts Medical school students (Melody and Dave) held auditions for the JQUS a cappella group. The group used my classroom for the auditions, so I sat in the corner observing while I typed up an awards ceremony program. One of my favorite students (let’s call her Little Sally) came in to audition because her friends kept bugging her to join. She was extremely nervous and claimed to be a bad singer, so she had a hard time starting. Melody and Dave did a fake audition for her, and we offered to turn away (and I offered to stick my fingers in my ears). She agreed to sing after Dave…

  • instruction

    The Great Apartment Remodel of ’13 – Flooring

    Here’s my first foray into the Great Apartment Remodel of ’13 – inspired by Everybody is a Genius. You’ve been thinking about redoing your apartment’s floors. Your cat threw up in all the carpeted rooms, your friend Sally spilled nail polish all over the bathroom, your friend Jean spilled hair dye in the other bathroom, and your science project burned a hole in the kitchen floor. However, it’s your lucky day. You won a raffle for a ₤500 Homebase.co.uk gift card and your Grandma Sally has given you $100 for your birthday.  What rooms will you choose to remodel? Why? Show your calculations for required flooring needed and how much…

  • musings

    The Teacher Cell Phone Dilemma

    We don’t have landlines for each classroom in my school, so most teachers make calls from their personal cell phones. I usually wear dresses to school, so I often keep mine locked in a cabinet to prevent theft. However, sometimes I miss calls such as requests to cover a class. I saw this sports bra with a built in iPhone pocket and thought…maybe this is the solution for my phone toting woes. How do you store your cell phone if you are a fellow dress-wearer?  

  • instruction

    The Shaded Region

    I found this problem online while looking for IB example problems for the Perimeter, Area, and Volume unit. Some students solved it, getting the answer of 6.4 cm. I reminded them to convert cm to mm, so they got 64 mm. I looked at their work and saw that they had used A = pi * r^2 rather than 1/2 * pi * r^2 for the semicircle. They did it again, this time getting the answer of 91 mm. I thought, “how can this circle be wider than the rectangle?” and checked their work one more time. It still came out to 91 mm. 54 cm^2 – 21.8 cm^2 =…

  • musings

    the fork in the road

    I’m midway through my fifth year teaching, and I’ve been considering what paths to take as my teaching career progresses. My headmasters recommended getting my principal certification via the Principal Residency Network, and I’ve also been interested in applying for National Board Certification. Whatever I choose would likely happen in 2014-2015. This is my first year taking on administrative duties (11th/12th team leader, IB coordinator, CAS coordinator), and I would like to get more experience and improve at each of these. This is also my first year coaching debate, which I am enjoying, so I’d like to improve at that too. For those of you who’ve decided to pursue either…

  • instruction

    LearnLaunch Conference 2013

    Come to the LearnLaunch Conference from February 1-2 in Cambridge! LearnLaunch grew out of EdTechup, and it’s very cool to see how it’s supporting the growth of educational technology. I have a soft spot for EdTechup because attending the 2011 conference exposed me to the educational technology space and inspiring me to start blogging in early 2012. I did initially start Appetite for Instruction as a food blog, but the “instruction” took over after I started attending EdTechup meetups, tweeting with other math teachers, and exploring the math teacher blogosphere. A colleague asked me recently how I get involved in so many cool opportunities, and I replied, “I just keep…

  • instruction

    classroom management at the barre

     Photo Credit: Pure Barre   Over the past few years, I’ve been going to the barre after work for fun and stress relief. No, readers, not the *bar*…but it still is a happy hour! Exhale Spa is near my school, so I always snap up deals from Groupon, Gilt, Rue La La, and Bloomspot when they are available. I’ve also gone to Bar Method, go to Lava Barre when in Virginia visiting family, and am excited to go to Pure Barre later this month. Today I went to Denise Griffin Crowe’s Core Fusion Barre class at Exhale. Notorious for her tough classes, she has quite the following. Her 6:15 a.m.…