Reflections on Math 7


June 2, 1998

Their seventh grade year coming to a close, Suzanne Alejandre's mathematics students reflect on what they learned. Here is a sample of their responses.

Emanuel's thoughts:

What I learned in 7th grade math is a lot of things. I learned about area, perimeter, length and how to measure it. I learned how important it is to use area, perimeter and length. I learned about fractions, decimals, percents and how to change them.

I also learned about mean, median, mode and what they are. I learned how to write using diagram, process and solution to solve a problem. I learned a lot about probability and how important it is to know about and what it means. The last thing I learned is about time. I learned how to use it effectively and I know how important it is in my life.

Malony's thoughts:

In my 7th grade school year I have learned about many things in Math 7. I learned about length, perimeter, and area. I learned how to use Geometer's Sketchpad and how to use a Claris Works file in a computer. I learned how to make a square in Geometer's Sketchpad from the hard drive. I learned about different kinds of math. I learned how to make different kinds of graphs with a Claris Works spreadsheet file. I learned about percentages, decimals and how to round off numbers. I learned about kites and more.

I learned that length is the units of a square or shapes. Perimeter is the outside of a square. Area is the inside of a square. I learned in Geometer's Sketchpad how to make a square with a certain length, perimeter and area. In a Claris Works file I learned how to type an essay and other things. I have learned how to "save as" or "save." I learned how to open up files and different kinds of things that have math in them. I went to the Math Fair and I learned about symmetry, pyramids and more.

That is what I learned in my 7th grade year. I learned many things in my Math 7 class. Our class was lucky to get to use computers for math and other classes, too. Our math teacher taught us something about computers that could help us. I learned so many things. Did you learn a lot, too?

Melissa's thoughts:

I learned many things in seventh grade such as working on computers, working out harder problems and new words. For example, a dot is a "point" in mathematics, like 2.634. I had a lot of fun learning how to do graphs and most of all doing decimals as percents. Example: What percentage of 98 is 22? I thought that it was fun learning mathematical terms with Mrs. Alejandre. I understood mainly everything she taught us. One topic that I hated learning the most would have to be probability. I hated learning about probability. That was the worst thing to learn out of all my classes but while working on probability I did learn something that just might be helpful to me later on in my life.

Andre's thoughts:

I learned a lot of things in Math 7 this year. I learned things like all seven steps of the problem solving method, enlarging dragons, how to write percents as decimals, how to write decimals as percents, etc. I learned way more tings than this but I just can't write them all down. When we learned how to do these things it was fun because we did an activity that goes with what we learned. An example of that is when we were making the dragon heads. That was an activity but we always would have to write an essay on what we did. It was still fun writing the essays because we got to type them on computers.

When Mrs. Alejandre taught us how to do some things, I already knew how to do it. But some of the things I already knew about, I learned more about. I was glad she taught us how to change percents to decimals and all of that stuff because I had learned how to do it when I was in elementary school but I had forgotten how to do it. I think that it is good to learn something twice because you can forget something like I did. When I forget some things and I am taught it again, I then know how to do it. That's why it is good to learn something more than once.

I guess I can say that I really had fun this year and that I learned a lot of things. I know I could have learned more if I had put more time into my work. I think that when all of my teachers made us take notes it really helped out. It helped out like when a test was coming up then I had the answers to it in my notes. Sometimes I couldn't use my notes on tests, but most of the time I could. I really learned a lot and I hope that I will learn more in my future.

Sarah's thoughts:

I've learned in this class what math I didn't know in sixth grade or elementary school. The thing I remember doing the most is probability. You work probability by throwing three coins and asking, what are the chances that they will all be heads or that only two will be heads. I learned about tessellations and how you can put one shape and make a better picture and bigger and more full.

I learned how to do a scale to make a little picture of a dragon bigger. To do that you cut it up into four pieces, give one to each person. There are four people working together and everyone makes their own picture and then they put them together to make one large dragon head. Hopefully they fit and if not then changes are needed.

We learned about shapes and then the cubes have to fit together some way. We learned about area and what is space, region, zone, expanse, district and neighborhood size.

George's thoughts:

Throughout seventh grade I have learned many things. My teacher, Mrs. Alejandre, made it possible for our class to have many different types of math. I think the most fun type of math was the enlargement by 4, 3, 2, etc. Mrs. Alejandre helped us when we needed it. She gave us the homework that makes you think. That is why we are so smart.

Our math exams are usually easy for us. That is why we are so smart! One thing that I liked doing during this year was LogoWriter. What made it fun was that you could type in commands and the turtle would do it. Also making graphs was fun. The best graph I have ever made had a cool color called tropical.

Through this year I can safely make an assumption that this was a good year. I was lucky enough to have a teacher that likes math as much as I do. I will never see this teacher due to the fact that we are moving. I will see you later!

Veronica's thoughts:

I have learned many things during the past year. Mrs. Alejandre can explain things very good because some things that I didn't know before I know now and I understand more thing, too. I have learned how to do tessellations, work on LogoWriter and many other drawing experiences. One thing that I now understand very well is how to explain myself when I am doing a math problem.

I've learned a lot and I've understood everything that Mrs. Alejandre has taught us. I've understood how to do probability, area, perimeter, basic math, and more. When we get a chance to learn things I make sure they get stuck in my brain and never come out because we are all going to use math every day of our lives. Some people think that we are not going to ever have a situation where we have to go back to 7th or 8th grade and use what we have learned.

For example: If you want to make something that is a custom size you would have to know the length and width of it. Another example is when you want to build a pool, you would have to know the perimeter, the area, the length, the width and how deep you want it to be. That is the stuff I learned in math plus much, much more.

I have achieved many things and I am glad I know math because without it I couldn't have known how many mistakes I have done, what the answer to a math problem is and I wouldn't be able to survive without it. Math is important in life forever. People can do lots with math. I've learned a lot and I have also understood.

Ratana's thoughts:

We learned about a lot of things in this Math 7 class. One of them was probability. I that was the hardest thing we had to do because we had to find out what the probability of something was. That was hard. So probability was the hardest thing to me that we had to do. I really didn't like working with probability. It just wasn't fun like most of the things we did.

The easiest thing to me that we had to do was the dragon head drawing. It was fun enlarging somebody's dragon head. It took kind of a long time to finish. It was fun because first Mrs. Alejandre cut the dragon head in four pieces so that each person in our group had one. Then we had a little graph paper and we copied our picture on the graph by tracing it. After that we had bigger graph paper and we had to copy each little piece that was in the square to the big one. Then we had to trace it on to a blank paper. I really liked doing that assignment. I hope I get to do it next year!

The most fun thing we did was flying kites that we made in Mr. Sawyer's class and writing about it. Also we had to draw a kite of our own on the computer. That was kind of fun but hard.

We have learned a lot of things this year. It was fun. I have learned things that I never knew existed (the probability things). That's why I am happy to have a teacher like Mrs. Alejandre.

David's thoughts:

I am going to be talking about some of the things I learned about in 7th grade math. I have learned things that I will need to know in the present and the future. In this math class I have gotten two A's and two C's. Mrs. Alejandre is an excellent teacher. She explains everything very well.

I have learned about area. Area is the square units inside of something. I have learned about perimeter. Perimeter is the outer boundary of an object. I have learned about length. Length is the number of units long ways on a square. I have also learned about process, solution and diagram. Process is how you got the answer. Solution is the answer. Diagram is a picture of the problem.

My favorite activity in Math 7 was when the class got to draw dragons. We got to draw dragons because of a book we read in social studies called "Dragonwings." We spent a week drawing these dragons. We drew them and then we colored them. We also got to listen to dragon music.

Tiffany's thoughts:

The tings we have learned about in Math 7 are for one a Dragon Head Project which was enlarging things. We learned how to make games and to do group evaluation. We also learned about probability. We learned about hexominoes and other shapes. Also we learned about perimeter, area, width, and length. We learned how many units are in a square.

I think that the most fun thing that I enjoyed learning about was enlarging. I think this was the most fun because we got to take a dragon and enlarge it. I was fun and easy. I also liked probability just as much but enlarging was easier. Probability was also easy to learn once I started thinking about it.

When we did the games that was interesting because we got to see the games the other classes made. It showed how intelligent they were. Then we had to play the games and evaluate them. Some of the games were fun but some of them were boring. We had to base our games on probability. You had to be able to use probability software to play the game. We could use the spinner machine, coin machine or two other machines.

LaKeisha 's thoughts:

During this year I have learned many things. I have learned about things that we easy and that I have learned already but I have also learned about harder things that I had never experienced. One of them was called problem solving. The problem solving methods came in handy. There were seven methods and they were all important.

I learned how to guess and check my problems. I also learned how to use a mathematics table chart which could help with a lot of math problem.s I learned how to draw out my problems. I also learned how to act out a problem. As you can see, the seven problem solving methods helped me a lot.

There was one activity that we did on tetrahedrons. That project was exciting and fun. We got to fly kites int he process of learning about them. We also got to make our own tetrahedral kits. The tetrahedron was science, math and social studies so it was fun.

We learned about length and width. We learned how to measure different shapes and sizes. We learned how to find the area of the shape also. We learned how to find the circumference of a circle and we also learned how to find the radius.

We learned about time and the different things about time. We learned about the hours, minutes and seconds. We also learned about the different time systems.

We learned a lot this year in this AVID math class. I did a lot of new things that I enjoyed and I enjoyed this math class a lot. Thanks, Mrs. Alejandre.

Nicole's thoughts:

What I learned in AVID math is how to do probability, how to change a decimal to a percent, how to change a percent to a decimal, how to change a fraction to a decimal and how to change a fraction to a percent. I also learned what mean, median and mode is. Mean is an "average." You add the numbers and divide by the number of numbers that you added. Median is a number in the middle and mode is the most common number. What I also learned is how to solve a hard problem that has to do with probability. I also learned about time and why it is so important. I learned a lot about computers and how to use them especially Macintosh because I never knew how to use them before.

Adrienne's thoughts:

This year in Math 7 I, Adrienne O. Matthews, have learned many things. I have learned how to measure area and perimeter, how to tell width and length. We got to make dragon heads where you had to use perimeter, area, length and width. We also had to use a lot of tem work. It was very hard and very fun.

This year we had to take notes. We used a hard drive file called Geometer's Sketchpad. Geometer's Sketchpad had to do with perimeter, area, width and don't forget length. Geometer's Sketchpad was saved to our disk through the hard drive. It was so hard but it was fun and worth it. Geometer's Sketchpad taught me a lot.

This year in Math 7 we also got to use problem solving methods. Some of them were guess and check, make a list, draw a picture and also make a table. This stuff really did help me learn how to work out problems and check my answers. This is a great way to learn how to do things. It helped me.

Philip's thoughts:

What I learned this year in AVID Math is a lot of things. I learned how to type. I learned how to use the Internet. I learned how to use Claris Works. I learned how to make pictures and paste them to make different designs like faces, objects, insects such as butterflies, etc. I also learned on the computer about LogoWriter. It has a turtle and you could make different designs. The turtle could also change its form. It could be a car, a house, a frog, all sorts of things. You can also program it to do different things like to make snow flakes and other beautiful things.

I've learned tings in solving math problems and what some words meant that I had never heard before. I've learned how to change a percent to a decimal, a decimal to a percent, a decimal to a fraction, a percent to a fraction and so on. I learned what probability meant, how to solve it, and what it's used for. The is what I learned in Mrs. Alejandre's AVID math class.

Tiffani's thoughts:

In this 1997-98 seventh grade school year I have learned a lot in AVID Math 7. I learned about life and what is has to do with math and about all the other things that have to do with math.

In the beginning of the year we learned about regular math and some upper level math. In the middle of the year we learned about problem solving, money, percentages, and lots of other things that I will tell you about. At the end of the year we learned about time and we tested our skills on what we didn't know in the beginning and what we know now.

Throughout this year I learned about tessellations, LogoWriter, dragons, three-dimensional shapes (3-D), area, length, width, and seeing little problems that turn out to have big answers. Like a question that you have to answer in numbers. I really, really, really learned a lot about computers. I even know more than my grandparents know. I learned about problem solving methods. I learned a lot about decimals, fractions, percentages and changing them.

I learned how to change a percent to a decimal , and a decimal to a percent. I learned to change a fraction into a percent and a percent to a fraction. I learned how to make things on the computer. I learned how to use Claris Works including using a spreadsheet. I learned how to use symbols and all other types of things in Math 7.

Eddie's thoughts:

In math I have learned a lot because of my wonderful teacher. I have learned about so many tings that I never knew before. I think that this year I have learned more than any other years. I have learned about some things that I didn't know were math.

I have learned about length, width, perimeter and area. With all those things our group and the other groups made the same thing. With area and perimeter we have learned a lot of things like if you want to know what the area is, first you get the width and then the length and times them together so that is the area of the square.

We also learned about the circumference of a circle and the radius. We have learned about the probability of things happening. We found out the probability of lots of things. We used the coin machine and we did POW (Problem of the Week) pages of the probability of things happening.

We learned about finding and changing a percent into a decimal and also changing a decimal into a percent. We also learned how to do Geometer's Sketchpad and how to use LogoWriter.

As you can see I have learned a lot throughout the year. I have most of all learned how to use the computer as a tool. I have learned how to use the Internet also. This year in AVID Math 7 I have learned a lot. I wish there were more teachers like Mrs. Alejandre.

Jessica's thoughts:

I learned a lot this year. I learned a lot in the last couple of months mostly. I learned what time is. It sounds so lame but I totally didn't know the true definition of time. When we had to write a report on time I sure did learn a lot. I even learned how to make an awesome sundial.

When you told us about the report it sounded so hard and boring. When I started to write my report it was actually fun. I am going to try to make a sundial.

I've always enjoyed math and I even enjoyed it this year. We did a lot this year. I really enjoyed LogoWriter. You can really make a lot of things on LogoWriter.

While I did my homework, particularly the POWs (Problems of the Week), all of those took me awhile to do. Whenever I finished my homework I always sat and drew a picture of the homework. That was fun and it gave me extra credit.

I really enjoyed this year and everything that we did. I even enjoyed the reports. Most people may think that I'm crazy but I really did enjoy it.

Yanette's thoughts:

In my AVID Math 7 class we learned lots of things because I'm in an AVID math class and my teacher has a computer room for 4th period. We get to do some of our work on the computers! We have a block schedule so that we have two hours in science two days a week, the same in math and Wednesday is a minimum day, so we have our regular schedule.

Geometer's Sketchpad is one of the things we have done in the computer room. It is a blank page that we go on and make a square. You have to label it and all but I don't want to go into that whole thing. Graphing, word processing, area dn perimeter are some of the things we have done in both rooms (regular and computer.)

We have worked on decimals and percents. They are my favorites because they are so easy. We work on decimals mostly in the regular room. We word process about them in the computer room. To change decimals into percents you have to take a number, for example .34981 and move the decimal over two times (34.981) Then you put a percent sign at the end. (34.981%) You now have your percent!

We also worked on dragon heads. We were supposed to draw the head of a dragon that someone else had drawn. We had to make it bigger. It was a two week project. We drew it on graph paper (regular paper size). Then we enlarged it onto a 1 inch side square graph paper.

We did homework. They were POW pages, problems of the Week, reports, and research experiments. The weekly problems were based on math that we did the classroom. We did bellwork when we came into class. It was also based on math that we were working on or what we were moving on to do.

Hector's thoughts:

Always a New Adventure

I've learned many things in math. I don't even know where to start. Math is one of my best subjects. Even though it's not so fun, I still do extremely well in it. Probably the most important thing I've learned in math is decimals - how to change them into percents, fractions and back to decimals. Decimals are very important in the fact that they figure out percents. I also learned about probability which is also very important. Probability is the chance of an event occurring. Probability is a number in between 0 and 1; 0 being it never happened or never will happen and 1 being 100% that it will happen.

In math I also learned to used a computer and the Internet. Computers are going to be a very important factor in the future. So, I should start my learning now so tomorrow I'll be prepared. My math teacher is one of the best in this campus, Mrs. Alejandre. She's a great teacher and a smart one, too. Math is always a new adventure for me. I never know what to expect and I hope it keeps that way.

Chantrea's thoughts:

I am thinking about what I have done this whole seventh grade year. So far I think I have learned so many things in math. Math is one of my favorite classes except when we have lots of problems. In this school year we didn't really work on number problems but we had many problems to solve.

Probability was one of the things I've learned during Math 7. It included games, chance, and percents. I've also learned how to problem solve, and work with area and perimeter.

In the beginning of the school year I learned how to make graphs and charts. It was fun during the seventh grade year because of all the projects that we have done in math.

One of my favorite things in math was learning about time. How time effects our lives and what time is. This the greatest project I've done because I got to explore time and know what time is really about. While I was working on time I've kept in mind that math is one of the important subjects today.

Lizette's thoughts:

We have learned a lot of things in mathematics that I don't even know where to start. For the first weeks we did a lot of little things, like division and word problems. Throughout those first weeks we started to learn about graphs. We learned about how they work and the different graphs that you can do when you are putting together the data.

Next we began to work with squares. We learned the meaning of perimeter and are. I learned many ways that I could use them both. For example, when I draw, I could make a little picture then making it bigger all with using squares, the perimeter and the area of the little design.

After we finished working with perimeter and area we moved on to probability. Probability is fun math and easy. When you work with probability you are working with changing fractions to decimals and decimals to percent and back and forth. I really had a lot of fun with probability.

After we finished with probability we started learning about time. This unit was very hard. We had to do a report on time and have pictures of clocks. A lot of people would probably struggle to describe what time is, but then my teacher started to explain to us and then we kind of understood. I liked my two math teachers. Mr. Tunison was my first math teacher and then Mrs. Alejandre was my second teacher. I had a lot of fun with both teachers and I learned a lot.

Gladys' thoughts:

I learned a lot in mathematics this year. I learned more about fractions and decimals. I learned how to turn a decimal into a fraction and how to turn a fraction into a decimal. Also I learned about mean, median and mode and about percentages, area, perimeter and length.

I also learned a lot about computers. I know that what I learned on computers will help me in the future. I learned how to use the Internet usefully and efficiently.

I loved math this year especially in the lab. I loved where I sat during the year. Math was one class I didn't mind walking into this year.

Andre's thoughts:

In AVID Math 7 I learned stuff like learning what is probability. Probability is important in mathematics because the probability of certain events happening or not happening can be important to us in the real world. I learned that if you want to know the probability of a coin landing heads, heads is the favorable outcome.

I learned how to count the area of something. If you want to count the area of something you have to count the inside of the something that you want to find the area of. I learned how to do perimeter of something. If you want to do the perimeter of something you have to measure around the outside of that something.

Also in mathematics I learned how to work together in groups. I learned how to work in groups by using "teamwork" and without teamwork you can't finish anything. You need teamwork, that is the key to accomplishing something. So now when we have a group assignment I always use "teamwork."

Sophan's thoughts:

What I have learned in AVID Mathematics is about problem solving, probability, measurement, time and other things. Problem solving is that we had to read the problem that was given to us to work. After we read the problem we figured the problem out and showed the problem. On the paper that we wrote on we had to show our work.

We also learned about probability. Probability for us doing something like this is that we can know how to do the things when we are a little bit older. So, we can work things out if we need to do something like that.

We also did things like learning about time and other things like measurement and how it is used. We also learned about mean, median and mode.

Krystal's thoughts:

In this school year I learned a lot about math. Some of the things I learned about were probability, tessellations and how to use the computer. I learned a lot of other things but those are the things I liked learning about the most. Out of those three things I liked learning how to use the computer because I did not know how to use a computer in the beginning of the school year. Now I know how to use the computer. At first I was afraid to use the computer because I was afraid that I would press a wrong button and the computer would mess up, but I learned how to use the computer from Mrs. Alejandre. I also learned a lot of other things about math that I will need to know in my life.

Jose's thoughts:

We learned a lot of useful things in the seventh grade math class. We learned about probability and how to figure out the chances of winning or losing. We learned problem solving and how to solve long and complicated problems. We also learned about area and perimeter. The most recent thing we learned was about "time."

Probability is the chance of an event to happen. In the calculator probability is a decimal from 0 to 1. We had to make board games and find out the probability of winning and losing. We used a lot of probability software in the computers. We also learned how to find out the probability of picking something like for a game.

We learned how to solve long and complicated problems. We learned how to make a solution, diagram, and a process for a presentation. We also learned about perimeter and area. Area is the space an object takes up. Perimeter is the amount of units the border takes up. We also learned how it can be useful in life.

We learned about "time." We had to go into the Internet, get information and make a report. We learned what time is and the history. We also learned how time helps us and if there wasn't time, how the world would be.

Candisse's thoughts:

I learned a lot of things this year in math. One of them is how to find the probability of things happening. I learned how to find the area and perimeter of things also. Another thing that I learned is how to enlarge pictures by using a factor of four. Those are some things that I learned in mathematics this year.

Some other things I learned in math this year are how to find the circumference of a circle. I also learned how to find the radius of circles. I learned about time. I learned how time is used and I learned about instruments made to tell time and how they work. I learned the history behind time. Those are more of the things I learned in seventh grade math.

Other things I learned involved a computer. I learned how to use computer software like Claris Works. I learned how to make pictures with Geometer's Sketchpad. I learned how to make a graph using a spreadsheet. I learned different ways to make pictures on HyperCard and on LogoWriter. Those are things I learned in seventh grade math.


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