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SWBAT evaluate and explain his/her individual strengths and weaknesses as indicated by an Algebra ll screening test.

Big Idea

Give your students ownership of their learning right from the beginning. Let them review and plan from their own screening test.

Set the Stage

5 minutes

You will want to review my Assessment Grading Rubric from yesterday's lesson before grading or returning these screening tests to the students. You will also need copies of the self reflection Assessment Strengths and Weaknesses Chart available. 

I begin class by whatever positive observations I can about the screening test results.  It may be that all of my students do amazingly well and we can all celebrate that, but it's more likely that most students have at least one area they need to work on.  I focus initially on the class strengths as a way of building a positive attitude about mathematics.  While I don't want my students to think tests are the be-all, end-all, I do want them to feel comfortable about their abilities to demonstrate their competence on a test and to learn from their mistakes.  I use this lesson to work to build a culture of collaborative work and individual student ownership of learning.  As students review their test results and work through corrections, they  strengthen their collaborative skills and develop study tools.  I return the exams (this is another opportunity to emphasize procedures) and explain the markings I've used.  (see grading rubric - I'll add copies of student work as soon as they become available.)  I explain that we'll be working as a whole class initially to develop skill in using the Assessment Strengths and Weaknesses Chart, then they'll be working independently with their own tests.  As I introduce different tools over the course of the first few weeks I require my students to use them to become familiar with them.  As the year progresses, I encourage my students to find which organizers and note-takers work best for them (MP5)

Put it into Action

35 minutes

Individual Work 15 minutes Students work independently to create a personal Assessment Strengths and Weaknesses Chart . I would recommend walking the class through the first assessment question or two depending on how well they understand the process, showing them where it fits on the list and how to indicate it as a strength or weakness.  I use "fist-to-five" to check for understanding and once the majority are "fives", I have them complete their strengths and weaknesses charts individually.  While they're working I walk around offering encouragement and assistance. 

Collaborative work 20 minutes: For this section I have my students work collaboratively on making corrections to those problems they missed. This is another opportunity for me to reinforce math practice skills such as making sense of and persevering in solving problems as they work to correct their mistakes (MP1) reasoning both abstractly and quantitatively as they move between decontextualizing and contextualizing the problems, (MP2) using appropriate tools strategically as they choose whether to use paper/pencil, graph paper, or a graphing calculator, (MP5) and attending to precision as they make corrections to errors of calculation, reading or recording (MP6).  I ask them to make corrections on a separate piece of paper and to show their work and/or explain their mistake.  For example if a student added incorrectly they would have the problem number listed under "computational" on their chart and would show the correct calculation on their correction sheet.  I have my students work collaboratively on this section so that they can build teamwork skills and this also allow me to attend to the those students who are completely overwhelmed by mathematics!





Wrap it Up

15 minutes

To close out this lesson I ask my students to independently create at least three problems like the ones they're "good" at for me to share with the class.  I use 3x5 notecards a lot for closure activities, so this is a good opportunity to reinforce this practice.  The idea of having others see their work can be a bit daunting for some students, so I tell them if they don't want me to tell the class which problems are theirs to just put a smiley face by their name.    My Sharing narrative explains more about why I choose to close the class this way.