Mar 30th 2015

Common Core in Action: Math Classroom Challenges- Using Formative Assessment to Guide Instruction (Coursera)

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This course offers participants an opportunity to engage in a community of learners using an inquiry cycle focusing on math formative assessments as a strategy for implementing CCSS in math. It focuses on the implementation of a Classroom Challenge: a 1 – 2 day lesson developed by the Mathematics Assessment Project (MAP) based on formative assessment and the CCSSM.

The Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSSM) offer the opportunity for educators to transform teaching and learning by positioning students in more active roles as learners. In addition to explicit content standards (which describe what students will know), the CCSSM present a broad range of practice standards that describe ways that successful students in math demonstrate proficiency. What do students and teachers need to know to take on these standards? What does it mean, for example, for students to persevere through new and challenging problems, and/or critique the reasoning of other students, and how can their teachers best support them?

In the words of one math teacher, “it’s not the students’ job to figure out what is in our heads; it’s the teacher’s job to figure out what is in theirs.” Such an approach requires far more focus on formative assessment and deliberate strategies for teachers to pre-assess students’ assets, needs, and misconceptions – then move them forward while continually re-assessing.