Friday, June 20, 2008

Teachers are Evil

Do you know how hard it is to think of a post title? Well I am starting this post with a blank title, and we'll see what we end up with.

Today was a tired day. I was tired, and as a matter of fact, my eyes are drooping. I should go to sleep, but I'm waiting for a blimmin' phone call. In the mean time though, I have been printing some things on number theory and having a heart attack. (Well there were these big ugly summation symbols, and they were eating up the integer parts to things! There were lots of subscripts too, which made me very scared as well...)

That was me talking like a four year old by the way. Well trying to, but unsuccessfully. My heart did jolt slightly and it still is "jolting about". Why do I always make myself think that doing a project is impossible for me? I have become too dependent on teachers, and this is my chance to "grow out of it". I will still have a supervisor, but this will be independent learning. I don't want to do a project any more you see. This is going to be swings and roundabouts, but I hope that I do decide to do a project by the end of summer. (I have chosen number theory, but foolishly perhaps.)

This three week placement has possibly done damage to some of the adventures I had planned for the summer. I know that eleven weeks are left, but I am annoyed because I forgot to do something which I should have done by now. (Anna probably doesn't care, and I'm hoping she's forgotten like I had!)

Wahey--when do I talk about my placement?

I had my evaluation session today and didn't get any "excellent" boxes ticked but all the "good" ones. Meh, I have a week to pick that up. It isn't really that big a deal but I think this will go in my portfolio so positive comments would be useful. Apart from that my objective for the last week is delivery, and I will be delivering three lessons.

The three lessons will be on making hexaflexagons and origami (hopefully). Well the "guinea pigs" are going to be the year 8 class on Monday, who I will team teach with the teacher. I have to plan the lesson and find cool black and white photos for the the hexaflexagons, so don't hesitate in suggesting any. If that lesson is a success I will have a go with the year 10s too, but this time the whole lesson. Finally, on Thursday I will have to teach a year 7 lesson and I can choose to do the same topic, but slightly easier. (That is a hexa, with only 3 faces and other origami). Oh, I have to do a starter activity on Tuesday for the year seven class, and I'm thinking about doing it on times table.

One thing which is really putting me of about teaching is the amount of paper work involved. It's 90% every other silly thing and 10% teaching, as was put to me by a teacher. For a lazy person like myself (ahem!) I can't see myself doing all the paper work... Hmmm. Hopefully I will be less lazy this weekend and plan two lesson, as well as doing the damn resource sheets.

I only had two lessons today, and one was year 10 set one. The lesson was on trigonometry and I wondered the following: we are told SOHCAHTOA, and we believe this. That is, we believe that sin x is opposite over hypotenuse, and so on. But where did this come from? The only thing I can tiredly say is that I know that tan x = \frac{sinx}{cos x} so the TOA makes sense.

Have I just missed something rather elementary here? I'm just trying to remember if I ever questioned SOHCAHTOA, or did I just believe it when I was told. If I'm making you cry by my stupid questions, then apologise, but a students question actually got me thinking about this and I was stumped on what to say.

Anyway, enough of that for now. The teacher in the class doesn't like me that much (I think) because I kept on making this bored student do questions later on in the book.... A student who go into trouble also told me not to be a teacher because "teachers are evil"! My "evil laugh" followed, but the student wasn't impressed...

Before I forget, I gave a small talk in form class today to the kids and it was nerve racking. Thankfully, I survived and this was partially because I have been in that class for the past two weeks and all the kids know me.

One week left, and I have successfully managed to drain the excitement that I had for the weekend. Teaching can be a very stressful job at times.


Anatoly said...

"we believe that sin x is opposite over hypotenuse"
This is the definition of sinx. It is possible to define it in other ways, but this definition is the first historically.

Beans said...

Hi Anatoly,

Thanks for that. I'm glad that I didn't say anything ridiculous to the student now!

How else would you define it though? (I've got some googling to do now!)

Beans said...

Power series is one way I suppose, but I'm looking for something more "natural" I suppose.

I remember sin and cos being a dodgy business from analysis this year too!

Anatoly said...

Power series is one way. Another way is to define arcsin as the integral of 1/sqrt(1-x^2). Then you can define sin as the reverse function.

You can also use exp:

A natural, but difficult to explain way is to use the unit circle.