Our Plan of Attack
After thinking through some of the articles we had read, we decided to start with our textbook and set up our learning targets for the first few chapters. Our state is adopting brand new textbooks this year and we are pretty limited in terms of the order of topics and sections we have to teach. We started with Chapter 1, and using the objectives for each section and the homework problems as a guide, we came up with the following list. LT = Learning Target, then the numbers represent the Chapter.Section.Objective
Chapter 1: Equations & Inequalities
LT 1.1.1: Use order of operations to evaluate expressions
LT 1.2.1: Simplify expressions using properties of real numbers
LT 1.3.1: Translate verbal expressions & equations to algebraic and vice versa
LT 1.3.2: Solve 1-variable equations
LT 1.3.3: Solve literal equations for a specified variable
**Note: All of the above LT's are going to be assessed using a quiz, but will not be taught - they were covered at the end of Geometry. Students can reassess these LT's if needed. Section 1.4 then, is the first taught lesson.
LT 1.4.1: Solve absolute value equations
LT 1.5.1: Solve and graph 1-variable inequalites (& interval notation)
LT 1.6.1: Solve and graph compound inequalities
LT 1.6.2: Solve and graph 1-variable absolute value inequalities
Then we repeated this for Chapter 2 - and that's as far as we got today :)
It's possible that doing it this way, we may end up wth way too many LT's and that's okay - we recognize this is a work in progress :)
So method wise, we have discussed both Kate's "2 quizzes per goal" method as well as small non-graded assessments, with a traditional quiz after every 2-4 sections with the only difference between this year and last year being the grading breakdown. I see pros and cons in both, especially considering we are doing a "hybrid" model, where we will still have traditional tests at the end of each chapter that are summative.
Ideas we are sold on
- We both definitely like the idea that students cannot get tutoring and re-assess on the same day. We both agree this feeds into the short term memory issue.
- We do want kids to have to schedule an appointment for reassessment so we can make sure and have one ready for them - this planning will be necessary so we don't feel so frazzled
- We both like the idea of some kind of notebook where the kids keep their checklist of skills as well as their scores (I think this is either from Kate or Jason)
- We do agree that we do not want to give our students permission to forget, so as LT's come up in our previous knowledge sections, student grades can go down (but they can still come in and reassess if that happens)
- We aren't sure which rubric we want to use - probably will be 5 pt, simply b/c I like multiples of 5 in my gradebook :)
- If we do 2 assessments and add them together like some people do, then the student comes in to reassess, which two scores then get added? Like say I got a 3 the first time, a 2 the second time, then reassessed and got a 4 - which ones go into the gradebook?
- What happens when a student is absent? Our quizzes right now are fairly traditional - and I forsee them staying that way with only big change being at the top where each LT is listed. If a kid is absent on quiz day, do they take it the next day? Take zeros on that quiz and have to do the reassessments for those LTs? Take a makeup quiz? Right now, we give 2 versions of the quiz and we show it to them, but they don't get to keep until everyone has taken it, but that won't work if we are trying to provide the quiz as a study guide.
- How much proof do we need to require in order to reassess? Obviously for the first reassessment, they have to show they have attempted the assigned practice problems for that LT, but what about after that? Tutoring with a teacher or our peer tutoring lab would work as well.
- For those that do a hybrid model, what is your percentage breakdown for grading categories?
- We are thinking of doing away with our warmups - they have ended up more punitive than we meant for them to - what do you guys do at the beginning of the hour instead?
- AN IMPORTANT ISSUE: How do you grade a problem that addresses multiple LTs?
- ANOTHER IMPORTANT ISSUE: What do you do with something that is important, but maybe not enough to get it's own LT? Like for example: Function evaluation in function notation - F(3) = ? - This is something the kids need to know but I'm not sure that it's a big enough topic for it's own LT, especially when often it fits under evaluating expressions.
I need to send a HUGE thank you to all of my twitter PLN that have patiently answered TONS of questions, listened to me brainstorm, provided feedback, asked questions to make me think things through, and just in general for being there :) I can never tell you guys how much I appreciate you!
Suggestions and comments welcomed, as always :)