Elementary Math Newsletter

January 18th - January 29th

Ramblings of Jennifer & Stephanie...

Team Leaders and Spotlight Teachers, please make sure to forward this newsletter onto your team members and any SPED support teachers that you feel could benefit from this information.


Openings are still available for our February 2nd Station Creation! Register today to get a spot! Each grade level has at least 3-4 ready to implement stations for your classroom. Also, if you come to the February 2nd Station Creation night, there will be "leftover" Station Creation goodies that will be given away for FREE!


Just a reminder that Stephanie and I update Forethought regularly. Take a look below at some of the items we have added or updated since the beginning of the school year.


  • CPA Scope & Sequence Calendars - Updated to fix minor typo's, TEKS teaching sequence and/or the length of time a TEKS is taught.


  • Year at a Glance - This is a new document that Stephanie created mainly for principal use but it is available to you as well. The year at a glance gives a brief description of what TEKS content should reflected in lesson plans and observed being taught in the classroom each week. This document can be found on Forethought under Curriculum Resources.


  • Math Training Documents - This folder can be found in Forethought under Curriculum Resources. Any documents/activities discussed during Station Creation, data meetings, and/or Spotlight Math will be placed here during the school year for access by all teachers.

Highlighting Process Skills

The next couple of newsletters are going to focus on justification in mathematics. The TEKS we are going to focus on is:


TEKS 1G: Display, explain, and justify mathematical ideas and arguments using precise mathematical language in written or oral communication.


So, why is explaining or justifying mathematics so important for students to learn how to do? Why is it an important part of the mathematics classroom?


Justifying answers to problems requires students to:


  • develop deep understanding of the content
  • analyze mathematical relationships
  • use math vocabulary
  • use critical thinking skills
  • think through the steps of solving a problem
  • use higher order thinking skills
  • increase written communication skills
  • increase peer communication skills
  • develop public speaking skills
  • self-correct for any mistakes


Having students Justify answers allows teachers to:


  • monitor understanding of content
  • understand misconceptions
  • provide appropriate interventions


In the next couple of newsletters, we will discuss some simple but effective ways in which you can get your students justifying their thinking in the classroom. Until then, take a look at this blog which shows an anchor chart to help students justify in math by giving examples of what it looks like and sounds like. Love it! What a great mini-lesson.

Revisiting Data Analysis

The January benchmark is going to be given the week of January 11th. This benchmark is important because it gives us information that we can use to plan our math intervention over the next couple of months. Below are just a few important reminders regarding planning math intervention.


  • Focus on Readiness TEKS only for Small Group Instruction intervention.

  • Supporting TEKS can be reviewed/practiced for mastery during stations, warm-up and/or as homework practice.

  • Focus on 2-3 Readiness TEKS for small group intervention only. Remember we want to intervene for these TEKS in-depth.


Two documents that can help you as you plan your math intervention are below:


Steps in determining Small Group Intervention focus

Data Meeting Reflection Document


3rd and 4th Grade teachers will be attending a Data Meeting at ESC on either January 21st or January 25th.


2nd Grade teachers...if your team needs any help with planning Small group intervention, please let us know. We are here to help!

Don't Forget!

  • January 19th - Benchmark Scanning Deadline
  • January 21st - 3rd and 4th Grade Data Meetings for Carleston, Cockrell, Harris, Rustic, Lawhon & Magnolia
  • January 25th - 3rd and 4th Grade Data Meetings for Challenger, Massey Ranch, Shadycrest, Silvercrest & Silverlake
  • January 26th - Math Academy
  • February 1st - K-4 Math Intervention Buzz Session
  • February 2nd - Station Creation
  • February 19th - Kindergarten & 1st Grade Performance Assessments Due


Kindergarten Performance Assessment Survey Link


1st Grade Performance Assessment Survey Link

1st Grade Middle of Year Performance Assessment Important Reminders

Kindergarten

Kindergarten Performance Assessment Survey Link is above in the Don't Forget Section!


TEKS: K.3A, K.8A, K.8B & K.8C


For the week of January 18th-22nd, students are going to continue focusing on the action of joining to represent addition (TEKS K.3A). Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above and reminders below to help you plan the lessons for this week.


Reminders:


  • Focus is on the ACTION of joining where the result is unknown.
  • Make sure to give students lots of hands-on practice with manipulatives to model the action of joining.
  • Students need to understand that when they join two numbers/sets/groups together they are performing the addition operation.
  • This is the foundation to addition problem solving.


For the week of January 25th-29th, students are going to spend some time reviewing and working toward mastery on the concept of graphing (TEKS K.8A, K.8B & K.8C). Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above and reminders below to help you plan the lessons for this week.


Reminders:


  • These TEKS should not be taught in isolation. If I am collecting data, I will organize it, then I will create a graph with the data, and finally I will draw conclusions about the data I collected. It's all embedded together.
  • Make sure all graphs created are purposeful. Are we figuring out something? Are we telling people something? Are we answering a question? Remember that a graph is a type of representation to organize and communicate math information. Give the math purpose.
  • Think beyond graphing for just color or size. Try to make the graphs your students create be about real world problems or questions and not just about stuff or objects.
  • Let students gather data by conducting a survey.
  • Make both vertical and horizontal graphs.
  • Drawing conclusions from data in graphs means that students can look at a graph and make inferences based on the information. Think, "Based on the information in the graph, I think or I wonder..."

1st Grade

1st Grade Performance Assessment Important Information and Survey Link is above in the Don't Forget Section!


TEKS: 1.2B, 1.2C, 1.2D, 1.2E, 1.2F, 1.2G ,1.3A & 1.5C


Last week, students focused on TEKS 1.2B, 1.2C & 1.3A. Students starting working on composing, decomposing and representing numbers up to 120. Over the next two weeks, students are going to continue to work toward mastery of composing, decomposing and representing numbers, however students are also going to start learning how to compare and order numbers up to 120. (TEKS 1.2D, 1.2E, 1.2F, 1.2G & 1.5C). Take a look at the unpacking documents above and the reminders below to help you plan lessons for the next two weeks.


Reminders:


  • Place value TEKS should not be taught in isolation. Example: Create the number 53 in any way. Stephanie created 53 by using 5 tens and 3 ones. What is the value of 5 tens? 50 What is the value of 3 ones? 3. So 50 + 3 = 53. Did someone else create the number 53 in a different way? Jennifer used 4 tens and 13 ones. Is this a correct way to represent 53? Yes. 4 tens has a value of 40 and 13 ones has a value of 13. 40 + 13 = 53.
  • Embed TEKS 1.2D and 1.2E together. Example: I want you to compose the number 25. Now I want you to compose a number larger than 25 on your place value mat. Use the sentence stem to compare the two numbers. Example: I created the number 43. 43 is larger than 25. I know this because 43 has 4 tens and 3 ones. 25 only has 2 tens and 5 ones.
  • Students need to be able to generate numbers greater than or less than using objects, pictorial models, and abstractly.
  • When comparing two numbers, have students place the numbers in the place value chart so they can accurately compare values. Take a look at this picture! It shows how students can put the number in a place value chart to compare the values in each place. It also shows that the students need to write both comparison statements.
  • No alligators to compare symbols. Take a look at the Math Coach's Corner Blog to give you some alternative ways to help students remember the greater than and less than symbols.
  • Students in 1st grade order numbers on an open number line. This is the beginning understanding of how numbers are written on a number line (Least to Greatest) for students.
  • Students should be able to list numbers written least to greatest and greatest to least. Make sure they order numbers using the place value chart as well!

2nd Grade

TEKS: 2.4B, 2.4C, 2.4D & 2.7C


For the week of January 18th-22nd, students are going to continue learning how to subtract two 2-digit numbers (TEKS 2.4B). Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and the reminders below to help you plan your lessons for this week.


Reminders:


  • Students in 2nd grade DO NOT have to use the standard algorithm to subtract numbers.
  • The goal is for students to be flexible in the method they use to solve subtraction problems and to fluently be able to carry out the method to get the correct answer.
  • Teachers are responsible for teaching students multiple ways to subtract numbers such as: base-ten/concrete models, pictorial models, number lines, mental models, and the standard algorithm.
  • The standard algorithm should be the LAST subtraction method introduced to students (It is the most abstract). Students should have lots of experience subtracting using concrete models and pictorial models before being introduced to the standard algorithm.
  • Students are to be solving subtraction problems within context (either verbally or in a story problem).
  • Make sure to check subtraction by subtracting again using a different method or by using the inverse operation, addition.
  • Remember that each subtraction problem given on a worksheet is actually two problems if students check their computation.


For the week of January 25th-29th, students are going to use their knowledge of subtraction computation to solve problems related to subtraction (TEKS 2.4C, 2.4D & 2.7C). Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and the reminders below to help you plan your lessons for this week.


Reminders:


  • 2nd Grade TEKS require students to generate, solve, and represent word problems.
  • Problems can be one-step or multi-step.
  • When generating word problems, students must be given the number sentence.
  • Make sure to practice subtraction problems requiring the actions of take away, comparing, and part/part/whole.
  • Make sure to give problems where the unknown may any one of the terms in the problem. (Example: 48 - ___ = 24)
  • The QDPAC "thinking process" and "graphic organizer" should be modeled on every computational word problem.
  • Do NOT teach key words. Students should be focusing on which actions are happening in the story such as take away, comparing, or part/part/whole. Introduce and take a look at the Action Posters on Forethought under 2.1B.
  • As students complete independent word problem practice for the rest of the year, expect students to use the QDPAC "thinking process" and show the "graphic organizer" on each word problem. Make it an expectation!
  • During the plan step of QDPAC, make it an expectation that students represent the problem in some way such as a strip diagram, pictorial model, number line, or with an equation. This is a great way to always practice TEKS 2.7C.

3rd Grade

TEKS: 3.3A, 3.3B, 3.3E, 3.3F, 3.3G, 3.3H & 3.7A

New information regarding these TEKS are in the reminders section below!


For the week of January 18th-22nd, students are going identify and represent fractions on a number line, represent fractions as distances on a number line, and partition an amount into equal shares. (TEKS 3.3A, 3.3B, 3.3E & 3.7A) Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and the reminders below to help you plan your lessons for this week.


Reminders


  • TEKS 3.3A & 3.3B (Representing and Determining a fraction on a number line) limits the denominators of the fractions to 2, 3, 4, 6, and 8.
  • TEKS 3.3A & 3.3B (Representing and Determining a fraction on a number line) limits the fractions to within one whole.
  • TEKS 3.7A discusses that students must understand that fractions can also represent distances from zero on a number line (This is our 3rd Grade ruler TEKS - Explain that when I measure the length of an object or the distance between two points, I can measure to the nearest whole inch but can also measure to the nearest 1/2 inch or 1/4 inch, etc.)
  • Distances on a number line (TEKS 3.7A) can be greater than 1.
  • TEKS 3.3E (Partition a group of objects into equal shares) will always be presented with a problem situation and will always have a pictorial representation.
  • District students showed 93% mastery on TEKS 3.3A and 74% mastery on TEKS 3.3E last year.


For the week of January 25th-29th, students are going to focus on equivalent fractions and comparing fractions (TEKS 3.3F, 3.3G & 3.3H) Take a look at the unpacked TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and the reminders below to help you plan your lessons for this week.


Reminders


  • TEKS 3.3F & 3.3G (Equivalent Fractions) - fraction denominators are limited to 2, 3, 4, 6, & 8.
  • Students must identify and represent equivalent fractions and must be able to explain why the two fractions are equivalent.
  • Equivalent fractions will be within 1.
  • Students will always have a pictorial model to help identify equivalent fractions such as a strip diagram or number lines.
  • TEKS 3.3H (Comparing Fractions) - fraction denominators are not limited.
  • When comparing fractions either the numerators or denominators will be the same.
  • Teach students to reason about the size of the fraction or to use benchmark fractions to compare. Do NOT teach them tricks to compare such as cross multiplication.
  • District students showed 84% mastery on TEKS 3.3F and 81% mastery on TEKS 3.3H last year.

4th Grade

TEKS: 4.5B, 4.8A & 4.8B


The focus for the week of January 18th-22nd is representing problems using an input-output table and numerical expressions (TEKS 4.5B). Take a look at the unpacking TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and reminders below to help plan your lessons for the next week.


Reminders:


  • Students are not expected to represent relationships that use more than one operation.
  • New Vocabulary: The input is the position in the sequence. The output is the value in the position. (See picture 4.5A Vocabulary below).
  • Students need to be able to create a table based on real-world relationships.
  • Students need to be able to pick the table that matches a real-world situation presented in a problem.
  • Students need to be able to extend a table.
  • Students need to be able to identify the relationship in a table.
  • Table inputs do NOT have to be in sequence.
  • 77% of PISD students mastered TEKS 4.5B on STAAR last year.


The focus for the week of January 25th-29th is identifying relative sizes of measurement and measurement conversions. (TEKS 4.8A & 4.8B). Take a look at the unpacking TEKS above, the CPA calendar, and reminders below to help plan your lessons for the next week.


Reminders:


  • Relative sizes of measurement includes: Understanding the difference between units that measure mass, weight, liquid capacity, and length (Example: Would I use gallons or kilograms to measure the mass of the book?) and being able to determine the unit of measurement that would provide the best measurement for an item (Example: Would I measure the length of the pencil in inches or feet?)
  • When discussing relative sizes of measurement be sure to teach the difference between weight and mass.
  • This is the first year students are converting measurements.
  • Converting measurements should always be given in a problem situation.
  • Conversion of measurement problems will ALWAYS have a table or t-chart with equivalent measure to help students. They will be able to use their table strategies to solve conversion of measurement problems.
  • Students will only have one-step conversions.
  • District students showed 75% mastery on TEKS 4.8A and 70% mastery on TEKS 4.8B last year.