Week 9 of Student Teaching came right around and I noticed that not only was I feeling nothing other than “school school school” – but students were feeling the same! This was becoming more and more apparent in math.
After eight weeks of doing the general, same routine: come into class, grab your math binder, work on math warm ups, go over math warm ups, and then jump right into the math lesson – not only did I need a change, but the kiddos did too.
I noticed that after warm-ups, they weren’t excited about starting math – no matter how enthusiastic I was about what we were covering that day. I decided I needed to get them smiling in a different way than cracking a joke they laughed at just to humor me. No, I needed something different. Something that would get them smiling every time. Something to release those endorphins to get their minds ready to embrace the new math challenge!
What I turned to was YouTube.
You know when you’re in a crummy mood and you catch yourself watching old YouTube videos of Jimmy Fallon’s sketches or funny interviews of Ed Sheeran? Well this instance was no different. I started showing my students a one minute video of something I found that was funny. This ranged from dogs jumping on trampolines to a pug dressed up as Drake and singing “Hotline Bling”.
I noticed a difference! They were more engaged and happy about math. Especially when they could but a positive note on coming to math class – they’ll get to see what Ms. Briggs thought was funny enough to share with them that day.
Teaching isn’t about lecturing students and do nothing but “school school school”. Part of our job is to make our classrooms fun so the learning environment can be the best it can be for students to succeed. Sometimes that means they just need to laugh – even if it means laughing at a dancing pug in a Drake sweater 🙂