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Make Math Moments Academy Forums Mini-Course Reflections Assessment For Growth Lesson 2.2 Two Formative Assessment Techniques You Need To Stop Using – Part 2 – Discussion

  • Lesson 2.2 Two Formative Assessment Techniques You Need To Stop Using – Part 2 – Discussion

    Posted by Jon on October 27, 2020 at 11:08 am

    What new take-aways do you have?

    What questions are you still wondering?

    Share your thinking below…”

    Jon replied 2 months, 4 weeks ago 20 Members · 41 Replies
  • 41 Replies
  • Jaana Gray

    Member
    November 2, 2020 at 10:43 pm

    I use mini whiteboards in my activities so that all students are engaged and active in my classroom. I can then ask students to elaborate or explain the their answer. Keeps everyone learning.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      November 9, 2020 at 8:06 pm

      Nice @jaana-gray. I also have mini whiteboards. Great for action questions!

  • Renee Trad

    Member
    November 20, 2020 at 10:40 am

    I am in (like many) a virtual environment. I know Peardeck and the use of breakout rooms, Google Slides that they share would be good for this and I was wondering if you have other resources that you would recommend? I am learning so much in your course so far. Thank you for all of your hard work so that we become better teachers.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      November 20, 2020 at 12:40 pm

      I’m a big fan of Google slides @renee-trad . Also check out Freshgrade. I’ll be sharing that tool in module 3 and 4.

  • Sean Breen

    Member
    November 22, 2020 at 1:49 pm

    I have been teaching in the classroom for the last 3 weeks. The physical set up of the classroom (masks, plexiglass dividers, 6ft distancing, open windows) has made it quite a challenge to see and hear the students who have been assigned seats in the back of the class. So, even though I am teaching live, I still use zoom to communicate with individuals or to work with breakout rooms.

    A great tool which I find more and more valuable everyday is Jamboard.

    • Kyle Pearce

      Administrator
      November 22, 2020 at 9:24 pm

      Wow, that sounds pretty tough, Sean!

      Are you saying that you actually use Zoom in a live session to communicate with students at the back of your room?

  • Sean Breen

    Member
    November 23, 2020 at 12:58 pm

    I teach in a relatively small (280) independent school in San Francisco. The campus is bordered by busy urban streets complete with buses, delivery vans, sirens, you name it.

    I do use zoom in the live room for a variety of purposes, including communicating with those students who I cannot hear over the street noise, and collaborative work. One problem with this is the other students in the class cannot hear what the zoomed student is saying to me, so I have to repeat it or write it on the smartboard. Ugh…But it has allowed more group work. However, because we are all on the same network, there are tech issues at times.

    • Kyle Pearce

      Administrator
      November 24, 2020 at 6:30 am

      Wow that seems so complex and probably stressful at times. Sounds like you’re running a pretty organized system. Nice job!

  • Gabrielle Bertrand

    Member
    March 22, 2021 at 12:59 pm

    When you are “listening” are you tracking what you hear, or informally just noticing how many kids are using the thinking you are looking for?

    • Jon

      Administrator
      March 22, 2021 at 6:59 pm

      @gabrielle-bertrand mostly just informal. But the tools we introduce in coming modules will make it easy to track and capture evidence.

  • John Gaspari

    Member
    March 22, 2021 at 9:16 pm

    I do agree with raising hands not always being beneficial. I am careful with when I use hand raising and ask my students to put their raised thumb to their chest to give the rest of the class time to think and get to an answer. After watching this video, I realize that there are times though when intent of my asking questions does not achieve the desired results. I do find that the best formative assessment is when students are actively working in random groups on vertical non-permanent surfaces on low-floor, high-ceiling tasks. Students share so much more of their thinking in their small groups, whether they are an introvert or extrovert.

    • Kyle Pearce

      Administrator
      March 23, 2021 at 6:18 am

      Love the thumb to chest approach. I first stumbled upon that idea from number talks and I really appreciate how helpful it is now to build a safe environment.

  • Daniel Whittaker

    Member
    July 9, 2021 at 12:34 am

    It is so nice watching these videos and knowing that I’ve already done this for the most part. I work hard to develop an environment where everyone is willing to share. I use popsicle sticks to assign random seats each day to use for groups (though I do sometimes tweak them if certain students shouldn’t be together.). Then through class if I need interaction from students I will pull out a random stick to ask them the question. I also work hard to not allow them to not answer, but rather wait them out to think about the question and answer when they are ready.

    I also have the benefit of great principals the last few years that were willing to give me my whiteboard space. I have 5 full size whiteboards on the walls so that I can easily have all students working at the board at the same time. Sometimes this is individual and sometimes it is working with their table group. This was harder during Covid restrictions as students were supposed to keep 1 m spacing at all times, but in normal years, there is no issue and I can accommodate 20 at the board at a time.

    Praying that this year will be restriction free in the classroom. But Singapore is playing it very safe.

    • Kyle Pearce

      Administrator
      July 9, 2021 at 7:12 am

      Sounds like you’ve got a really nice community for math learners to flourish! I agree this year will be so much more enjoyable if we can get back to the pre-Covid protocols. Crossing fingers!

  • Jamie BALLARD

    Member
    July 22, 2021 at 2:45 pm

    I have the space and ability to get students up and moving and I do so during skills practice time already. However, I particularly enjoy your example of the tree problem, because it is not a long or multi-day task. I feel like I keep reading all these deep, rich, tasks and then struggle to implement due to time. However, your percentage tree task is super simple and flexible. This speaks loudly to me. I do not do well with guided notes because I often go off on a tangent. I like to model “playing” with mathematics and having student practice “playing” with the math. Your activity allowed for the flexibility I desire and engages all students.

    Pedagogical practices beat curriculum any day. However, sometimes it is the curriculum that sparks the change in pedagogical practice. Thanks for modeling a very simple yet powerful change.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      July 23, 2021 at 8:53 am

      We’re glad you pulled those important take aways from this lesson. Now, how can we design tasks like that regularly? Have you checkout out the PD pathways here in the Academy yet?

  • Leslie Stevens

    Member
    July 30, 2021 at 5:27 pm

    Yes… I still have students raising hands in class… but I am trying to keep this to a minimum (sometimes I have to ask for a volunteer to share something). I’ve tried cold calling and don’t feel great about that practice either. Thanks for the great ideas to get all students participating vs. just the hand raisers. I love your tree task!

    • Jon

      Administrator
      July 31, 2021 at 8:50 am

      I agree…cold calling isn’t that great as well. That’s why I try to design tasks like the tree task (https://makemathmoments.com/tasks) that ignite action.

  • Suzie Lowe

    Member
    August 5, 2021 at 11:30 am

    My big takeaway – I was doing some of those alternatives to hand raising as part of my math warm-ups and noticed that fewer of the students were raising their thumbs over time. Not doing that anymore.

    I also really like the tree problem too. Does so many things beyond just percent (fractions and decimals).

    Wonder – I’m sure you talk about this in the academy more, but my question is, what does a warm-up look like? For example, with the tree problem, would you dive right into it, or would you do something before that?

    • Jon

      Administrator
      August 8, 2021 at 8:31 am

      Since these problems have low floors diving right in is no problem. We typically do warmups to start class that are not related to the days topic. This helps with our spiralling learning goals and keeping old ideas fresh as well as previewing new ideas.

  • Jeanette Jones

    Member
    August 7, 2021 at 7:04 pm

    I LOVE this tree problem! I love seeing examples of ways others teach in the classroom. Those are helpful for me!

    I love going around the classroom and watching the students and then being able to ask a specific student to share their strategy. Usually after that the student is not as shy to share.

  • Pamela Brock

    Member
    August 16, 2021 at 2:25 pm

    I am grateful to be reminded about the “Matthew Effect” and how it relates to math class.

    I have always felt like asking questions in class was almost wasteful – I already knew who understood and who did not understand as I walked around the room (for the most part). I would always get stressed when I didn’t do some of these things that I was taught were just good teaching. I feel less stressed just knowing that it’s ok if I don’t! I also find social interactions draining – physically and emotionally draining. I’m going to add the book to my list (that keeps growing as I listen to your podcasts and take this course). Thank you!

    Question I keep coming back to: How I’m going to pull kids in that just want to dig their heals in, the non-participators. I’m hoping the tasks will be so engaging and they join because they can’t resist figuring things out.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      August 17, 2021 at 7:03 am

      Like in any class we’ll run into students who resist and won’t want to participate. How do you handle that now in your classroom?

      You’ll find that when you make this routine the non-participators will dwindle away.

      • Pamela Brock

        Member
        August 17, 2021 at 10:18 am

        Thanks for your response. I don’t get into power struggles with them – those just end badly. I do keep checking back with them – but there have been a few that refuse to cooperate. In a Notice and Wonder activity last year I had a student ignore his group completely – even the students couldn’t pull him in. Maybe I should’ve had them working in pairs though. Maybe I’m just not saying or doing the right things. This student was definitely one of the toughest we’ve had.

  • Callie Smith

    Member
    September 20, 2021 at 10:09 pm

    I love all the alternatives to raised hands. I think raising hands alienates students and prizes only the ones who are quick on their feet. I also find it boring to hear from the same people over and over. I used to “retire” people when they’d been called on enough. And so then they could check out for the rest of the time…. So not productive. I’ve used popsicle sticks and LOVE them… but it still seems to have that same effect Jon was talking about of putting the focus on one person…

    I like the idea of having students all working. I’m always afraid I won’t get to everyone, though. And then how do you make sure both people n the pair, or all the people in the group, are working on the task? It seems like some just take over the thinking in the pair.

    • Kyle Pearce

      Administrator
      September 21, 2021 at 6:19 am

      Great points and a true concern. Sometimes, you may not make it to every single person, however if students are working collaboratively, you’ll certainly be able to make it to each group and hear from the collective.

      • Callie Smith

        Member
        September 21, 2021 at 12:25 pm

        Ha! Today I actually sent one of the pair away to be able to have a conversation without Theo their “helping” too much. It was interesting and rather telling.

      • Callie Smith

        Member
        September 23, 2021 at 9:26 pm

        * the other there…. Not “Theo their”

  • AJ Ellison

    Member
    January 25, 2022 at 11:21 am

    I really like having the opportunity to do mini-lessons or idea sharing with groups during the productive struggle time. When I see a group that is heading in a direction that will not end in the results the standard is looking for, I like to take the opportunity to question and guide students towards a path that will get them the desired results. To me it is the equivalent to working in rotating small groups but with the benefit that the students are already actively thinking and engaged and providing the ideas and that multiple groups are keyed into what that group is talking about and internalizing it to their needs.

  • Virginia Hagman

    Member
    February 10, 2022 at 11:47 am

    I find the idea that when we are expecting students to participate through volunteering we are limiting some students interesting. Utilizing a classroom model which encourages thinking and activity among all students is more equitable to those who may not have the confidence or may be introverted. I like the idea of providing students the room to work within their comfort zones while also encouraging them to discover strengths through problem based learning.

  • Jeremy Sarzana

    Member
    March 26, 2022 at 9:28 pm

    A big takeaway for me is to stop having students raise their hands in order to gather data regarding formative assessment. Asking questions and giving tasks that all students engage with is a better way. I think I will be able to observe student thinking better as I listen to the conversations as they work in groups.

    I wonder how to best give students hints in order to facilitate the productive struggle.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      March 27, 2022 at 8:54 am

      @jeremy.sarzana how have you used hints in the past?

      • Jeremy Sarzana

        Member
        March 28, 2022 at 2:47 am

        A bit. I like the idea of giving a hint and then walking away. I would like to give hints that encourage students to use previous knowledge and think about making connections. I also want to encourage students to start at the most concrete representation as possible if they are stuck. But I also want them to see their strategies through even if they are incorrect. Any tips on giving hints?

      • Kyle Pearce

        Administrator
        March 28, 2022 at 6:54 am

        While the definition could differ from person to person, I tend to use questioning as a means to keep students thinking. You could call that a form of a hint, but I tend to think of hints as telling them something, whereas questioning involves asking them something. The end goal can be the same, but I feel the verb is slightly different.

      • Jeremy Sarzana

        Member
        April 8, 2022 at 12:14 pm

        Ok I like that. I will try questioning.

      • Kyle Pearce

        Administrator
        April 9, 2022 at 7:03 am

        When we have a big idea in mind for a lesson it can help us think both ahead of and during a lesson of questions that will keep students thinking and moving towards that big idea or mathematical behaviour. Let us know how it goes!

  • Terry Hill

    Member
    June 14, 2022 at 12:00 pm

    I agree that hand-raising tends not to work for most students, as most students will never raise their hands. I had never thought about it as the rich getting richer, but that actually makes sense, and it is what happens. I also agree that the suggestions from the book were not that great as they tend to put the spotlight on one person.

  • Jacqueline Joseph

    Member
    June 17, 2022 at 2:12 pm

    I use a technique l read about somewhere called 100% participation/no opt out where hand raising is used to answer questions. The catch is that if a student doesn’t raise their hand, the question becomes a think-pair-share question first. A second call for hands raised should lead to every hand and then a random or strategic selection is made. If there are students that are not able to answer the question, they can ask a peer for help and then rephrase the answer in their own words. It is like a supported cold call technique. It could be followed up with a class poll on if they agree or disagree with the given answer. I wonder if there is a place for something like this.

    • Jon

      Administrator
      June 18, 2022 at 7:12 am

      @jacqueline-joseph I like this structure for questioning. Using this structure or helping teachers use this structure also requires teachers realizing they can’t just ask the same types of questions we would have asked in that traditional sense.

      I think what this structure and the “active questioning” I mention in the video have in common is that the questions we ask students have to change.

  • Stephanie Pritchett

    Member
    July 5, 2022 at 9:56 pm

    The Matthew effect as well as extrovert and introvert makes a good case for not having students raise their hands including cold calling. I have done this in the past thinking I was engaging students in what I was teaching. I want to improve in this area.

    I’m wondering how do you orchestrate the consolidation or sharing of ideas? Is this when you have students raise their hands or is this more like the 5 practices when you as a teacher are trying to sequence strategies?

    • Jon

      Administrator
      July 9, 2022 at 7:33 am

      I typically revert to the latter. Giving a task for students to work on in groups…then we can gallery walk or take up. You can still have students share their ideas by having hand raising, but I typically do this after everyone has been active first.