Day 1 was fairly interesting. We started off with a speech by principal Salome Thomas-El, which was a pretty good motivational tool to get us started. Then our GPS session started. It’s always great to be able to talk to other math teachers, and we had a good discussion on what is definitely the hardest part of the ISSN Outcomes: the Take Action phase. Figuring out what having students take action looks like, and how we can fit it into our classroom when it always seems like this key important phase takes away time from our overpacked curricula is still a work in progress, but progress was made. Finding a way to weave the standards into the action, such as learning about graphical representations of mathematics at that time, seems like one way to go.
Then the Learning Expeditions were finally revealed. We were given a variety of choices of exhibits, museums, and memorials to visit, but we could only choose one, and only 12 people could go on each exhibition at most. My number was chosen towards the end, so I didn’t get my top choices of expedition, but my trip to the Hirshhorn was still fairly enlightening, and doing it as a learning expedition reminded me how having an assignment at a museum can make it much deeper and force people to look at an exhibit closer.
Now we’re talking about kicking off the year with an expedition. We yearn for the day that we can have one as self-guided with our students as these were.