Threshold: Threshold

 
 
 
Threshold
Students In Action
 
 
Students In Action
 
 
 
Routines and Procedures

Threshold

I begin every Math class with a high-energy strategy called Threshold. Students line up outside the classroom door "dressed for success" in their uniforms with their shirts tucked in. After a group greeting, a Math chant (practicing our multiples), and instructions for entering, my students walk to the door, shake my hand, enter the room, and immediately begin a Math warm-up. Threshold ensures that all of my students transition from their previous class smoothly and that their minds are ready for Math instruction.

Strategy Resources (2)
Students In Action
 
 
 
Student Handout
 
 
Here are the lyrics for our "Roll 9's" Chant. This regular practice makes fact fluency fast, easy, and fun for my students. The rhythm sticks with them and they often apply the chant while working on math computation exercises, making it a very important and helpful strategy for math instruction.
 
Students In Action
 
 
Student Handout
 
 
Here are the lyrics for our "Roll 9's" Chant. This regular practice makes fact fluency fast, easy, and fun for my students. The rhythm sticks with them and they often apply the chant while working on math computation exercises, making it a very important and helpful strategy for math instruction.
Stephen Pham
Rocketship Si Se Puede Academy
San Jose, CA


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Moderate
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Fifth grade
Similar Strategies
Blended Learning Model Overviews
Stephen's Model Overview

In my school, students use a lab rotation system where they go to a computer lab for set amounts of time to work on online content through sites such as Lexia and ST Math.  In my own class, I also use a station rotation system, where groups of students spend time learning in different ways.  Online sites like Khan Academy and FrontRow help to differentiate the content, collaborative skills make learning social, and teacher interventions help me to address misconceptions. My students gain valuable digital and character skills while they manage their own learning.  My model has fostered perseverance and independence among my students that I know will help them to be successful in their lives.

Number of Students: 17 students per class

Number of Adults: one teacher; one paraprofessional (20 minutes per period)

Length of Class Period/Learning Time: 90 minutes with teacher; 90 minutes in Learning Lab

Digital Content/Ed Tech Tools Used on a Regular Basis: Khan Academy; Google Classroom; Google Forms; Front Row; ST Math (in Learning Lab); DreamBox (in Learning Lab)

Hardware Used on a Regular Basis: Chromebooks (1:1 ratio); SMARTboard

Key Features: station rotation; lab rotation; student agency;individualized learning paths

 
Feedback Systems
Tech Thursday

Since my students use several different online platforms to personalize their learning, it is crucial that my students review outcomes and trends in their technology usage. Once a week, the class meets to celebrate achievements by "shouting out" students with high performance and also hold students accountable by "calling out" students who have not spent enough time doing problems correctly. Topics that show lower levels of mastery are reviewed and explained, and upcoming assignments are previewed. This is also the time when I respond to the questions my students have asked via the platforms' messaging systems. 

 
Academic Culture
Stamina Captains

Stamina captains track stamina among students at their table throughout independent work. Especially while working on differentiated or individualized practice, students may feel "alone" in their work and thus easily get distracted (whereas they might feel more pressure if all students are working on the same exact practice). Thus, through emphasizing the skill of stamina, students constantly think about their level of focus and ability to avoid distractions. When students begin discussing something that is off-topic, the stamina captain will write down their name on a post-it. After that, those students get a chance to "fix" their behavior by getting back on task. If their stamina is not fixed, they then get a phone call home as a consequence for their lack of focus. Through this closed loop, parents and students understand their focus and work at school.

 
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