some books i read the last year

Bolded are my recommendations.

Italics are things I re-read this year.

  1. Obie is Man Enough (Schuyler Bailer)
  2. A Thousand Splendid Suns (Khaled Hosseini)
  3. The Raven Tower (Ann Leckie)
  4. Stay Gold (Toby McSmith)
  5. The Left Hand of Darkness (Ursula K. Le Guin)
  6. Airman (Eoin Colfer)
  7. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo (Taylor Jenkins Reid)
  8. A Wrinkle in Time (Madeleine L’Engle)
  9. A Wind in the Door (Madeleine L’Engle)
  10. The House on the Cerulean Sea (TJ Klune)
  11. Little Fires Everywhere (Celeste Ng)
  12. The Stars and the Blackness Between Them (Junauda Petrus)
  13. Sissy: A Coming of Gender Story (Jacob Tobia)
  14. The Mysterious Benedict Society (Trenton Lee Stewart)
  15. A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor (Hank Green)
  16. The Anthropocene Reviewed (John Green)
  17. One of Us in Next (Karen M. McManus)
  18. Honey Girl (Morgan Rogers)
  19. Two Can Keep a Secret (Karen M. McManus)
  20. One of Us is Lying (Karen M. McManus)
  21. Turtles all the Way Down (John Green)
  22. An Absolutely Remarkable Thing (Hank Green)
  23. Cat’s Eye (Margaret Atwood)
  24. The Thief Lord (Cornelia Funke)
  25. Peter and the Starcatcher (Rick Elise)
  26. The Robber Bride (Margaret Atwood)
  27. Hagseed (Margaret Atwood)
  28. The Body is Not an Apology (Sonia Renee Taylor)
  29. Dragon Rider (Cornelia Funke)
  30. Here, There Be Dragons (James A. Owen)

beginning my masters in teaching

  • Things I am thinking about
    • Healing math trauma
    • Habits of mind
    • Math anxiety
    • Creativity and joy in math
    • Community
    • Curiosity
    • Access
    • Honors/standard/fundamentals (the levels of math offered at my school… we are trying to reimagine this)
    • Portfolios
      • Assessment
    • Communication
    • Identity
      • Disability
      • Gender
    • Art
      • Geometry of clothing/fashion
      • crocheting/knitting
      • Clay
      • 3D printing
    • Technology 
    • Journaling/Reflections
    • Productive struggle
    • Math literacy
    • Games 
  • Questions
    • Why do we teach proof in geometry to ensure all students have access to and understanding of proof?
    • How can we foster an environment of collaboration and curiosity in mathematics?
    • How can we use proofs to teach students literacy skills in mathematics?
    • How can we use proofs to help teach students how to productively struggle?
    • What does a healthy mathematics community look like and how can we use community to heal math trauma and foster resilience in problem solving?
    • How do we decenter white male mathematicians in teaching geometry?
    • How can we use portfolios in mathematics to assess student growth and help students to see their own growth? 
    • How can we disrupt students’ internal narratives of fixed mathematics ability?
    • How can geometry be used to help students rediscover the power of play and creativity in problem solving?
    • How can teaching proofs be used to improve mathematical communication between students?
    • How can we use technology tools in teaching geometry and proof?
    • How can we incorporate art in teaching geometry? (Needs to be more focused) 
    • How can we use journals in mathematics to help students understand themselves as mathematicians, and their mathematical process?
    • How can mathematics be used to help students explore and understand identity and their place in the world?
    • How can we use games to foster creativity and collaboration in mathematics?
    • How can we reimagine the divide of students between varying levels of math courses?
  • Possible project ideas
    • Workbook of selected proofs/puzzles that build on each other
    • Outline/Example of a portfolio based assessment system
    • Website/blog: Community Mathematics —> daily/weekly puzzles
      • Series of collaborative puzzles?
    • Unit/Lesson Plans
    • Something else??????
    • Design a project for students to do

Chosen Research Question (As it stands right now): What does a healthy mathematics community look like and how can we use community to heal math trauma and foster resilience and curiosity?

converse

Alternatively titled: tattoo #7

i wore white converse to my high school graduation. this was against the dress code, which banned sneakers. But my high tops were clean and white, they matched the school mandated cap and gown, and i liked them.

normally, I would not be allowed to walk at graduation unless I changed my scandalous footwear. But I was giving a speech and it would have caused more disruption to prevent me from participating, and so I wore my converse.

a full body photograph of me, from my graduation cap to my sneakers made the front page of the local newspaper. school administrators were upset that I had tarnished their image. I was happy that this image actually showed an authentic version of me.

I kept and wore these same shoes again for my college graduation. They now sit on a shelf, near my diplomas, much less white and with many more rips than they did for their debut. But I will wear them again when I graduate with my masters, and any other degrees that may come after that.

and so as i wrap up year 1 of teaching, and it feels simultaneously like I am ending my own freshman and senior year of high school. I am in this place of transition out while still settling in. I am feeling rebellious, excited, frustrated, tired, and proud.

And when, this past weekend, I saw a local tattoo artist post a set of flash tattoos (drawings that they will tattoo all in one day, on a first come first serve basis), my rebellious impulsiveness took over. I submitted my interest in about 8 of the designs, and the next day found out that I would be getting this one.

this high top converse sneaker. the perfect way to wrap up a year of academic and personal accomplishment. A symbol of being here, despite the rules, and staying here to change the rules.

lost in the numbers

18 children 

And one teacher 

were killed today

by an 18 year old school shooter.

(And maybe more will not make it) 

The second major incident of gun violence to make it to my news radar this month. 

And there were over 200 that never made it to me. 

We have drills

We have trainings 

We have debriefs 

But we will never have peace of mind

And in hearing about this tragedy,

This unthinkable catastrophic normality,

I think first about where in my classroom would we go. 

Where are the locks and the curtains and the heavy objects to use to barricade the door.

I think about where are the books for throwing in self defense

And where are the sharp objects I could use to break the window. 

And then I think about how the news would reach my person. 

And my people

And I think about how i would recover if this happened here 

how this is community would recover

And I think about how would the situation change depending which class i was with, 

and their dynamics, and their needs,

And how I would best protect them,

And how could we get through this together,

And
I think of of each and every one of them.

The 58 on my class rosters.

And the many more who are not. 

I think of their faces 

(Or half visible faces) 

And I think of the goodness I see in them all. 

And I can’t think of the world without them. 

And
I try to think of anything else 

anything besides the idea, the possibility, of this happening.

19 children were killed.

And 2 adults. 

27th school shooting

212th mass shooting 

1984 people killed by guns 

In the United States of America

in 2022

so far.

And I have to say so far 

Because there will be more.

For these irreplaceable,
individual, incredible human beings

who have taught me how to be a teacher,

i want more for them. 

more than this never-ending barrage of preventable and catastrophic violence.

I want more accountability and action and shelter and healing and care for them. 

and
i want more for me.

Sources: https://www.gunviolencearchive.org/, https://www.npr.org/2022/05/24/1101050970/2022-school-shootings-so-far

wrapping up year 1 of teaching

  • things that have been on my mind lately
    • i want to crochet something for students in some way but it either needs to be a very small (like 5 minutes each) type thing, or i don’t give one to everyone. perhaps only my advisees.
    • how to send off the seniors? I don’t teach any, but i know a handful from clubs and the play and such, and i would like to celebrate them
    • this department is really shifting. there is so much possibility here.
    • how are there so few weeks left. one month from now i will be done with my first full year. beginning to end with the same students.
    • grades are meant to be simple, transparent communications but also convey so much information and i dont know how to do that accurately/meaningfully (yet?)
    • there are so many things i wish i could do to wrap things up and reflect and preplan for next year because im already excited to try this dice project again. its going pretty well but there are a lot of things i would do differently the second time around and i am excited to try again!
    • a middle school art teacher in florida was fired for allowing discussion of sexuality and identity in class. i am tired. i am sad. i am anxious.
      • every week it feels like my humanity is questioned anew.

assorted thoughts from my notes app (pt. 5)

  1. predictions watching Netflix show, The Ultimatum
  2. how do you not feel guilty for being happy?
  3. Notes from physical therapy appointment: 3 exercises, 30 reps
    1. Updated note: 5 exercises, 30 reps, add weight? PT said I did good!!!
  4. “i love hearing his laugh downstairs”
  5. headache/migraine log
  6. “i can let these circles overlap”
  7. Brainstorm for my end of year letter to my students. I had a teacher who wrote a 12 page “journal entry” from 30 years in the future where she goes to see all of us spread around the world and what we’re up to. I want to give that to my students too.
  8. “there’s comfort in not being special sometimes”
  9. “fish oil 2/18”
  10. Generative art
  11. in class i give away the answer too quick…im too excited. i gotta let them have that excitement and glorious moment of discovery and clarity
  12. Speed run times for rows of my old crochet project: 5:07, 4:23, 4:53, 4:28
  13. a menu of potential birthday celebration ideas for my ❤
  14. “i don’t often keep promises to myself. i need to rebuild that trust”
  15. “I am not parallel lines”
  16. to think about (make peace with) when there is time (even though there never is):
    1. how to exist in capitalism
    2. creating waste, minimizing waste
  17. Quote from C: “Friends? I like them as a concept. Execution varies.”

Focuses of the week

  1. School/Work
    1. Finalize plan for 3D print project guidelines
      1. begin trial run of it
    2. Area Unit arc + collect puzzles
    3. Brainstorm probability idea
  2. Crochet
    1. Get to yellow section of the sweater I am pattern testing
    2. finish back of sweater
  3. Self Care
    1. journal 1 sentence every day
    2. designate time to care for friendships/relationships
  4. Chores
    1. Plan yard cleanup
    1. New dog training schedule
    2. make appointments
    3. clean carpets
  5. Walking Practice: walking training season* is in full swing, and my dogs and I are working on gaining some confidence in stressful/overly exciting situations (ie. there are any bikes, other dogs, amazon delivery trucks, cars that are too loud or are going too fast, roller skates, squirrels, strollers, all the smells, etc.)
    1. Remember to STRETCH
    2. Try running a bit
    3. Coordinate 5k team for https://www.laughingatmynightmare.com/

Looking forward to:

  • Play games/do puzzles
  • cook yummy food
  • romp around outside with the dogs
  • snuggle
  • watch good tv/listen to good podcasts
  • friends who make me laugh
  • being back with students who make me laugh
  • feeling rested (pls)
  • roller blade season can start soon hopefully
  • doctors appointments to help my joints not hurt

long and short term goals and dreams

But who’s to say which is which

  • Create a math elective
  • Decorate/organize classrooms and office
  • write a play
  • create knit/crochet clothing
  • create a gender retreat or pen pal network or mentoring network or something related to giving the trans youths a place to explore gender
  • write pretty math puzzles
  • make cool escape room puzzles
  • crochet cool things
  • knit cool things/learn to knit
  • Research the crossover of fiber art and math
  • journal/post updates more consistantly
  • write poetry
  • Create art with trash
  • Learn more about 3d printing
  • Write a letter to students thanking them for being my first group I’ve thought for a full year
  • Do a workshop on gender/trans competency for faculty
  • Learn to roller skate more
  • Find a way to get back into dance

assorted thoughts from my notes app (pt. 4)

  1. quote from C: “I like having options even though I hate making decisions”
  2. reading recommendations from a friend: Heartstopper, The Stars and the Blackness Between Them
  3. pretty sure this is a journaling note when I was panicking and trying to calm myself by writing down all the thoughts: “We are all just human. We are all big and little. We are universes contained within universes. Of course this is hard.”
  4. shopping list for yarn
  5. “How much corn” (thats the whole note)
  6. ideas for a review day: “Crocheting Olympics”
  7. quotes from C playing video games:
    1. “That was not very nice”
    2. “aaaauh”
  8. “I won’t let other people use gender against me”