Friday, February 5, 2010

Course Selection Week! (How to get new students to take your class!)

Last Friday, I sent my regular classes off with a reading assignment and a sub and said "I'll be back ... Monday!"
Then I took as many of our Honors 9th grade and 11th grade Math classes on a "mini field trip" to my PC Classroom. I wanted to show them a little of what we do and entice new students to take Computer Math, Advanced Computer Math, AP Computer Science as well as AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC and Calculus Research Lab. So, in a nut shell, this was my presentation:

Part 0: Flyers - At the beginning of each period, I selected one class to bring.  So, I went down to that class and dragged everyone to the PC Classroom and gave out flyers first thing. The 9th grade Geometry Honors got one flyer about Computer Math & Advanced Computer Math. The 11th grade preCalculus Honors got two flyers about AP Computer Science and Calculus Research Lab. The 11th graders also got a pep talk about taking AP Calculus next year as some do chicken out. See the flyers here in sidebar.

Part 1: Introducing Shadowfax! (10 mins) - What's a cluster and who needs one?  I showed off one of our fractal prints and one of our ray tracings.  We talked about how they render farms like the one they used to make Shrek III.  We even discussed weather forcasting and the blizzard that was coming tomorrow.  Then I mentioned that use Linux geeks like to name our computers, like my home PC is Hall 9000 and this cluster is named Shadowfax.

Part 2: Introducing Mr. G! (10 mins) - I showed them my website and asked why its up to version 22.0?  Then I showed off my blog,, especially the post entitled: "does this happen to you?"  Then I showed how I save my math class videos on my youtube channel, u CAN learn AP Calculus, Finally, just for fun, I showed them the youtube Novell ad "linux vs. mac vs. pc."

Part 3: SAGE Demo! (20 mins) - I used via Firefox and my students used the SAGE liveCD.  This demo was similar to this one The SAGE Notebook pages are best viewed in Firefox or Safari.  For more info about SAGE, see

Teaching with Technology, 

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