Assessment & Data

Mastery Zone

My blended classroom is based on the Flipped Mastery model (please see the "Introduction to Mastery Based Learning" strategy video). When my students think that they have mastered the skills and concepts in a particular lesson, they show their completed notes to me or my co-teacher and get a Mastery Quiz. Students then head to the Mastery Zone, which is a section of the classroom reserved for students taking Mastery Quizzes and Level Tests. There is no talking in the Mastery Zone and the only technology permitted is a calculator. If they achieve at an 80% or higher rate, students move forward in the curriculum. If not, they review the concepts and materials in the lesson and re-take the Mastery Quiz in the Mastery Zone when they are ready. The Mastery Zone assessment strategy is a concept I adapted from the Algebros Flipped Mastery program.

Strategy Resources (4)
Students In Action
 
 
Student Handout
 
 
This is an example of a mastery quiz my students will take once they have completed their notes and practice problems. Every mastery quiz is five questions, and my students must get a minimum of four questions correct (80%) move onto the next lesson. Level tests are 20 questions and my students must get 14 questions correct (70%) to move onto the next level.
Students In Action
 
 
In this photo, you can see the distinct areas of the room, with students working in groups in the front, and my students working independently on their quizzes in the Mastery Zone, which is located in the back of the room.
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This diagram gives an overview of the classroom set up, where students are grouped while working on lesson notes and practice problems, the Mastery Zone for mastery quizzes, a station where my students can pick up lesson packets, and an area where my students can go to for small group tutoring. As you can see, the room is divided into different areas, where my students move to depending on where they are in the mastery cycle.
Students In Action
 
 
Students In Action
 
 
In this photo, you can see the distinct areas of the room, with students working in groups in the front, and my students working independently on their quizzes in the Mastery Zone, which is located in the back of the room.
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This diagram gives an overview of the classroom set up, where students are grouped while working on lesson notes and practice problems, the Mastery Zone for mastery quizzes, a station where my students can pick up lesson packets, and an area where my students can go to for small group tutoring. As you can see, the room is divided into different areas, where my students move to depending on where they are in the mastery cycle.
Student Handout
 
 
This is an example of a mastery quiz my students will take once they have completed their notes and practice problems. Every mastery quiz is five questions, and my students must get a minimum of four questions correct (80%) move onto the next lesson. Level tests are 20 questions and my students must get 14 questions correct (70%) to move onto the next level.
Benjamin Siegel
New Visions Charter High School for the Humanities II
Bronx, NY


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Long
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Tenth grade
Similar Strategies
Academic Culture
Introduction to Mastery Based Learning

In the traditional classroom, time is constant and understanding is variable from student to student. The Flipped Mastery model inverts the traditional relationship between time and understanding, letting understanding be the constant and time be variable. All of my students are held to the same high standards, but they master standards at a pace they feel comfortable with and are ready for. Initially, many of my students are confused about what a self-paced mastery-based class is all about, so my co-teacher and I find it helpful to introduce the concept to our students in a very strategic and explicit way at the beginning of each school year. 

 
Routines and Procedures
Student Binders

We don't use text books in our class, we make them. Each student is given a binder at the beginning of the year. The binder becomes a reference book for the students as they fill it up with the lessons they have completed. Many standard textbooks have become a diluted hodepdoge of information, hard for most students (and even myself) to decipher. This binder allows me to create a resource tailored to my students.

 
Instructional Closings
Quick Write Summary

Truly understanding science requires my students to think in ways they might not have experienced before. Conceptualizing something that our eyes can't always see is difficult, and so it's valuable to provide graphic organizers, visual models, and other support tools as resources that my students can access while diving into content. One of the richest ways to get students to build their own methods and approaches to solving problems is to allow them to think on paper. Lessons involving direct instruction are always broken into small segments with short, casual writing periods built into the end of each one. These Quick Write Summaries are meant to focus on content construction and are free of structural analysis. I don't grade them, but I'll always help students put together their thoughts and present them with questions that guide them to the answer. Writing-to-learn strategies like the Quick Write Summary help visual learners with long-term comprehension of scientific terminology and sets the stage for students demonstrating their knowledge through writing in future assessments. 

 
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