for a book study of
Chapter 5-Balanced Assessment: The Key to Grouping Students in Math
Like all subject areas, balanced assessment is so important. I can especially understand this based on my high school math experience. I developed math anxiety when it came to math tests. I would do fine with the other assessments, but when it came to tests, I would freeze up.
Dr. Newton talks about a variety of pre-assessments teachers can use so that they have balanced assessment when it comes to math. Some examples are: surveys, checklists, quizzes, interviews, and running records. Using a variety of assessments really help to plan who is in which group. I really need to do more pre-assessment in my classroom.
Ongoing assessments to change groups are important too. You can use your guided lesson/observation notes, and math journal prompts to assess throughout units too. In addition, math conferences and math exit slips are important too.
One thing that I really liked and that I think some people forget to do sometime is error analysis. As teachers, we need to know where our students are making mistakes, but also why they are making them so that we can correct their misunderstanding. I also like how she included that she has students reflect on their math tests, and including an action plan for students. She mentioned using this site for sample performance assessments:
Chapter 6-A Framework for Guided Math Lessons
Dr. Newton talks about the importance of teaching at the instructional level of the children, and how you should teach various skills in multiple ways to reach various types of learners. You can also differentiate their math homework.
The math lesson should include: a hook/connection, student practice, and share time. During share time, a student should share what the focus of the lesson was in summary. Teachers should also ask if anyone is confused about anything, or if they have any comments. She includes a full lesson to really help the reader to understand what it would look like in the classroom.
Next week, we will cover chapters 7 & 8.