Guided Math - Chapter 8

I can't believe this book study is almost over, but I am getting so excited to implement many of the components in the fall.  Did you check out Brenda's post over at Primary Inspired?  Laney Sammons, the author of Guided Math answered our questions!  Click here to go read the post.

Guided Math
Chapter 8 - Assessment in Guided Math
This chapter is being hosted by Kim at Finding Joy in 6th Grade

"Assessment should not merely be done to students; rather, it should also be done for students, to guide and enhance their learning." (NCTM 2000).  In the past few years our district has been moving towards making sure all teachers know the difference between formative and summative assessment.  Do you have a hard time keeping track of the difference?  I've heard it described in a few different ways: 

Formative is assessment for learning.
Summative is assessment that summarizes learning.

Formative is the chef tasting the soup.
Summative is when the customer is tasting the soup.

Formative is like a check-up with the doctor.
Summative is like the autopsy at the morgue.

All assessments are not created equal.  Determining when and how to assess will depend on the needs of your students (and the mandates of your state/district).  Fountas & Pinnell (1996) give the following as reasons for assessment:
* informing teaching decisions
* assessing students' strengths and knowledge
* finding out what students can do (independently & with teacher support)
* documenting progress
* summarizing achievement
* reporting to the administrators, school board, and community

Our district has really made a push towards using learning targets and "I can" statements in the past few years.  Not only does it provide common language in the classroom, but during each lesson I can use the learning targets to do an informal progress check.  For example: if the learning target was, "I can tell time to the nearest 5 minute mark".  I might do a quick check at the beginning of the lesson.  Thumbs Up = I can do this quickly and accurately
Thumbs Sideways = I can do this, but not very quickly
Thumbs Down = I still need help to do this
At the end of the lesson, I will do the same progress check.  One thing I realized is that during conferences I can be addressing these informal progress checks. 

Another popular form of assessment can be rubrics.  I admit, I am the teacher that creates the rubric and then shows it to the students.  I can only recall creating a rubric with a classroom twice in 10+ years of teaching.  I'm pretty sure it was to meet a requirement for a class, too.  Does this make me a bad teacher?  I don't think so.  I think it just means I haven't found an effective way of developing rubrics with a classroom.  Do you have a successful way of doing this?  If so, I'd love to have a conversation with you about it.

Another area I have tried, but not to a large extent is goal-setting with students.  I find that many second grade students have a hard time setting reasonable, achievable goals within a timeframe without A LOT of teacher guidance.  The only aspect of math in which I have had students set goals with some success is with math fact progress.  Have you had success with goal setting in the early primary grades?

In getting ready to implement Guided Math & Math Workshop in the fall, I have started putting together a binder of resources.  In it, I have basic information about my Math T.I.M.E. workshop approach.  I have included a basic outline of what fits into each component.  I also made a list of Must Do / May Do activities.  Each of those areas has its own divider and I have started organizing all of my resource files there. 

I recently discovered a pocket chart I haven't been using in the past few years.  Amanda over at Reaching for the TOP suggested that I use it for my math workshop.  Lightbulb moment!!  I can place the T.I.M.E. letters across the top, one in each color column.  In the pockets under each heading, I can place index cards with the must do/may do choices for that day.  Since I anticipate only having 3 groups (most of the time), I can place student names under the T column for those I plan to conference with.

Now that we are nearing the end of the book study, how are you getting ready to implement Guided Math & Math Workshop in the Fall?


Rachel said...

I'll look it over!

Sandra said...

I can look it over for you right now!

audrey46 said...

I'm willing to look over it for you - I teach 7th grade math.

I Do, We Do, You Do said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
I Do, We Do, You Do said...
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Brandi said...

If you need another set of eyes I'd love to look it over.


Storie said...

Wow! Thank you for all of the offers to help review my packet. I have two volunteers, but if I need more help I will let you know :)

Farrah Kilgo said...

It sounds like you are well on your way! I love that you've got a binder all together and are ready to jump in...I'm going to have to follow suit and get to planning! Thanks for a great post.


Brenda said...

I really like your quick, informal assessment. And your pocket chart idea is brilliant!
And you're already organizing a binder?! You are organized! (& I am jealous!). Are you planning to share your binder here? I'd love to see it!
Stop by & link up your post!

Primary Inspired

lk24 said...

I just bumped into your blog and I am very interested in how your year went with Guided Math/ math workshop. I am teaching 5th grade next year and we are trying out departmentalizing. I will be teaching math to 4 classes. I really want to try doing guided math, but I am super nervous. Honestly, I have no clue where to begin. Do you have any suggestions for me?

Storie said...

lk24 - send me an e-mail and I can try to help answer some of your questions (

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