Sunday, January 2, 2011

Supporting math instruction (a bit more)

Yesterday's post focused on mathematics formative assessment lessons being developed to support the Common Core State Standards.  To put those FALs in context, here's a bit more.

First, where do FALs fit into an overall curriculum? 
The Supporting Instruction monograph emphasizes the flexible options:
The FALs are intended to be used by teachers every couple of weeks or so as part of their courses. Individual teachers or districts can decide exactly how each FAL will be used. Some teachers, for example, could use one FAL to introduce a math topic, and other teachers might use it two-thirds of the way through their teaching of the topic to raise questions and check for further understanding, or some weeks later to consolidate learning.
Second, where (literally) are the FALs being used in Kentucky? 
Under the Gates Foundation's math grant to the Prichard Committee, Boone, Daviess, Jefferson, Jessamine, Kenton, and Warren County ninth and tenth grade teachers (and some eighth grade teachers as well) spent last spring in intensive professional development around formative assessment strategies for overall classroom instruction. This fall, they have begun using the FALs directly, with plans to explore how the overall curriculum can use those lessons systematically to deliver on the Commmon Core.  Their accounts of classroom success add to my excitement about these new tools for deeper mathematics learning.

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Updates and data on Kentucky education!