Barbie Badge of Honor
"Students love throwing Barbie off the side of a wall outside our school," said Beth Anthony, 7th grade teacher at Lexington Middle School. "Students dangle their doll through the hallways, and they are sure everyone else in school is jealous of them." Anthony incorporates Illuminations lessons into her curriculum, but she also expands, tweaks and creates new materials to ensure these lessons are meeting the needs of her students.
"I have collected several kinds of dolls now [for Barbie Bungee], and I will have students compare data and graphs of lighter and heavier dolls," said Anthony.
This lesson affords Anthony the opportunity to bring her students into the computer lab to track their data. It also allows her the chance to introduce her students to Excel as a means to organize their information.
"My favorite part is seeing those smiles when student guesses for best fit lines are almost perfect with the computer models!" Anthony has also incorporated the lesson Paper Pool into her classroom, and has expanded on the lesson by creating a pentagon-shaped organizing poster. Anthony references the poster throughout the lesson as a way to draw connections between pictorial representations and algebraic formulas.
"Students really enjoy using the Paper Pool Tool. It served as a good intro for beginning to generalize patterns, as well as, helping students take intellectual risks in a safe way," said Anthony.
Anthony has a student who struggles with writing, but with the aid of the Paper Pool tool, he was able to explain what would happen with pool tables of various dimensions and have his ideas proven quickly.
Now that she has found success with two lessons and more, Anthony continues to look for Illuminations resources that "will be exciting enough to capture the attention of my active, busy students."