Time to shift modes. Summer is a chance to digest all the issues from a school year and reconnect with people that enjoy this work as much as I do. Bonus, the Varsity Math franchise is expanding!
Varsity Math Summer Camp
June 13 - 16, June 20 - 23
A random idea that provides an opportunity to build on what makes Varsity Math so successful, the relationships. Having so many (61 of 68, 89.7%) for two years was an excellent experience, and I'm seeking to build on that even further. I have 36 campers who plunked down $20 to spend four mornings of their summer with me. It'll be my first real 1:1 situation as I checked out a Chromebook set so that we could work on programming, financial literacy, space travel, and some engineering topics. I don't have all the details planned, but each morning is 2.5 hours and I want to give them time to research and discuss things as much as possible. Oh, and did I mention we're going to fly a bunch of quadcopters around?
CAMT, San Antonio, TX
June 29 - July 1
It's the big Texas Math Teacher conference. I'm not going explicitly for the conference, I was invited to be recognized as part of the ongoing PAEMST PR Tour. They're having me wave to the crowd on Thursday morning. If you're attending, I know the tallest people on twitter will be wandering around.
Twitter Math Camp, Minneapolis, MN
July 16 - 19
The big one. Really the main thing I look forward to in the summer. I'll be presenting a session on the 17th about chopping curriculum up into more logical pieces, sharing experiences from Calculus and Algebra II. There's no snow in July, right?
I have two main ideas to look at, teaching wise.
Mainly, Pre Cal is in need of a reckoning. I've taught it for six years now and it needs an update. Teaching Calculus for a couple years has given me a lot of insight into what needs to change at the level below. I need to improve my ability to get kids thinking more abstractly about certain topics.
Second, in another small step for Varsity Math, I have a BC student next year. If you go to Calculus trainings this is usually how any big time AB/BC program is built, one experimental student at a time. This student showed stunning aptitude in my AB course, has a desire to pursue engineering, and is a great candidate for giving me a chance to see what BC is all about. In my long term goals for the program, having a full class of BC is one of my targets. The kid is really looking forward to it, and so am I.