Guided Math Groups to Differentiate

I am aware that I have an advantage in that my math ability group class is comprised of only 9 students. Having a small class gives me the ability to facilitate teaching to a guided level while not placing a large class-wide lesson that might be above my student’s level. I can relate to this short video as in our classroom I can regularly attend to even smaller groups of students and assist them with a focused guided exercise. While I am working with a group the rest of my students can be working on their own laptops on Reflex Math or IXL.

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Let’s teach for mastery — not test scores | Sal Khan

This was a great TED Talk by Sal Khan talking about teaching for mastery rather than the current educational model with tests and checkpoints. Sal discusses the issues with a broken system that allows us to advance even while clearly stating that there are knowledge gaps in our learning, if you get 87% in a test it’s perceived as great, but what about the 13% that you don’t know. Sal argues that we are proceeding without mastering the foundational concepts that lead to our continuing knowledge. Eventually, all these knowledge gaps add up and that is when we find ourselves hitting a wall and believing that “math isn’t for me” (or any other subject/concept that is in question). He has a great analogy comparing the current educational model with building a house, where the foundation is 80% good, so we continue on to build on top of it, and unsurprisingly when we are building the third or fourth floor the entire building collapses.

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