Revision Day

Several math teachers I know, including Kogut, do successful revision days.  I tried a couple of times last year to mixed results.  Similarly at the beginning of this year.

This term, however, I think I may have gotten somewhere.  Here’s what (finally) went right.

1) This term, we had our first revision day after only 3 assessments. With only 3 assignments, it was attainable for students to revise all or almost all of their work so far.  Sweet!

1a) Since we do standards based grading in the way we do it, assignments show up under multiple standards on a progress report.  This makes the progress report harder to read and perhaps more intimidating (the 3 assignments each show up 3-5 times on the report).   As students fixed and then re-took an assessment, I showed them all the places they could check off that assignment.  Suddenly, the progress report was less overwhelming!

2) Retaking to demonstrate mastery.  Because I had multiple versions of each assessment, with students who were more behind and needed more help, a peer or I could assist them on (re)learning the material they struggled with and then trying another version all by themselves.  In some ways, I feel like this is a cop-out (are the students thinking? will they remember later?) but in other ways, this shows students that they can do tasks that they avoided or missed the first time ’round.  And for more skills-based tasks, I’m ok with this.

3) I got to focus on 1/2 the class.  Because I have student teachers, I got to focus on 1/2 the class while they worked with the other half.  I think this day could have been successful with just me, but it definitely helped.

4) Instant gratification — I gave out progress reports the next day and made a big deal about how much people who worked hard the day before improved.  Especially since there have only been 3 assignments, students got to see how much their work paid off.

Next step – Kogut made this awesome “re-evaluate me on ____ standards because ___” form. I’ve used it when students are revising more “thinking” assessments (instead of skills assessments where they just take another version), but incorporating this for all the time is my next step.

Also, sometimes i had to interpret my or my student teachers’ feedback for the students.  We should work on making our feedback clearer so less teacher help is required.

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