Building Better Math Responses

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Building Better Math Responses - Constructed Responses for Problem-Solving in Math

Building Better Math Responses - a scaffolded approach to help your students build and write better math responses and improve their problem-solving explanations and constructed responses.

I created this resource based on the strategies I use in my own class to help my students build better math response answers when communicating their thinking during problem-solving or constructed response activities.

Building Better Math Responses is the perfect companion to my Building Better Writing Responses and my Building Better Reading Responses.

This resource can be used with any open response or problem-solving question where they have to explain their thinking. It can also be used with my Math Reflection Fans. Please download the free preview to see all this resource contains. At the end of the preview are 3 printable pages you can use in your class right away.

This resource contains 5 main sections:

- A set of Math Response Goals – These are the goals I use in my own class. These goals can be used in two different ways: 1) As a clip chart for students’ individual goals. Students move along the goals at their own pace, moving their clip or clothespin as they master a goal, or 2) The goals can be used to build a cumulative set of success criteria. One goal/criteria is taught at a time. When the class has mastered the particular goal, another goal is then added. This chart is also color-coded, showing the colors students will use when color coding their own answers. There is also a self-reflection sheet for students to complete after they feel they have mastered a goal. I have provided this resource in two different forms: 1) Goals on a blackboard background, and 2) Goals on a white background for an ink-friendly print.

- Assessment Options – There are a few different options for assessment provided. There are self, peer, and teacher success criteria checklists for quick formative assessments, as well as a full rubric for more formal, or summative assessment.

- Posters and Bookmarks – I have made a colorful poster using the acronym “WHALE POND” to help students remember the criteria they must include in their answers. The poster comes in color for classroom display, as well as in black and white for easy printing. Students can color their own posters and keep a copy in their own notebooks or journals. I have also reduced the size of the poster to create bookmarks for students to keep in their books to remind them of the success criteria when writing their own responses (in color and b/w).

- Scaffolded Math Response Sheets – In my class, when we are adding a new goal/criteria, we write about it in our math notebooks. For each goal in the clip chart there is a “Good Mathematician” note with the learning goal, an explanation of why we include the particular goal, and a personal reflection prompt. For each goal there is also a math response answer sheet that includes the criteria studied – building from using one goal, to using all nine goals in one answer.

- Math Response Activities and Printable Worksheets – I have also included a section containing different printable worksheets for students to use when communicating their math response answers. These particular sheets make a great display of student work, get your students working together with a partner or a small group to improve answers, are perfect to send home after assessment to help inform the parents about what their children are working on, or put in students’ portfolios for reflection at the end of a term or year. There is a large focus on student accountability on these printables – asking students to reflect on their answers, improve their answers, identify their strengths and areas of need, and set goals.

Each printable has the answer question section left blank so you can include a question that perfectly matches the concept you are working on in class at any given time.

I have bundled all three of my Building Better Responses resources together. You can view the bundle by clicking HERE.

*** This resource is also included in my HUGE 4th - 6th Grade Essentials Bundle containing 20 of my best classroom resources.


Other resources to help Build Better Responses that you may be interested in:
Building Better Responses Bundle – Reading, Writing, and Math
Building Better Reading Responses
Building Better Math Responses
Building Better Writing Responses
Stick-It Together – A Collaborative Reading Response Activity for Upper Grades
Stick-It Together – A Collaborative Reading Response Activity for Primary Grades
Stick-It Together – A Collaborative Math Problem-Solving Activity for Grade 6
Stick-It Together – A Collaborative Math Problem-Solving Activity for Grade 5
Stick-It Together – A Collaborative Math Problem-Solving Activity for Grade 4

Other Math Resources you may be interested in:
Math Journal Bundle containing 4 full resources for your interactive math journals
Interactive Math Journal
Interactive Math Journal 2
Math Reflection Fans
Math Concept Posters
Mathematics Cootie Catchers Bundle
Building Better Math Responses
Math by the Month – Monthly Math Posters
Stick-It Together – Collaborative Problem-Solving for Common Core 6th Grade
Stick-It Together – Collaborative Problem-Solving for Common Core 5th Grade
Stick-It Together – Collaborative Problem-Solving for Common Core 4th Grade
EQAO Math Task Cards – Grade 6 Bundle
EQAO Math Task Cards – Grade 3 Bundle

Total Pages
60
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
1 Year

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Building Better Math Responses
Building Better Math Responses
Building Better Math Responses
Building Better Math Responses