Do you ever find yourself teaching and feel like you are drowning in between the 32 different levels that exist in your math class. For me, sometimes my high group is two or three grade levels above my low group. I could teach to the lowest or I could teach to the highest, either way, someone is getting left behind.
If this sounds familiar, I've developed a system called Snowboard Math that is perfect for your classroom! Rather than sorting students out into "math groups" and dictating what they can and can't achieve throughout the year, this sets forth a growth mindset. Students can pick their level of difficulty just like you would if you were going down a ski hill. If you fall on a black diamond, it's no big deal! You're learning, it doesn't mean you're not good at math, it's expected you'll fall sometimes and that's okay, just go back and try an easier "hill" or an easier version of the concept.
Concepts Covered in this Snowboard Math:
-Types of Numbers
-Integers vs. Non-Integers
-Higher level thinking
-Answer Key with explanations for the double black diamonds that you can easily post on Blackboard to help students who are ready for that challenge!
Here's what Snowboard Math looks like:
-8 nights of homework (2 nights per packet, I usually have students level up after one day)
-Each student starts off by reading the standard (common core and VA SOL aligned) so they know what they are practicing
-Each student does the bunny hill which is a quick refresher, usually on vocabulary or something to get them engaged and focused
-Each student does the hot cocoa break (when I snowboard, hot cocoa is the one mandatory part of the experience) this is the test prep so that students are all getting the very basic practice and so that you as a teacher have some baseline to see how they are all doing
-Then students pick either green, blue, or black, to meet their levels. You will notice, that often the black diamonds have to do "less" problems because their problems are much harder. Everyone does about the same amount of work just meeting them at their appropriate challenge. I review the questions with students in small groups based on what they've picked
-There will not be an equal number of students in each group. Usually, only 5 or fewer students are in the black/double black category, but these are the students who adore snowboard math and would have been ignored otherwise. They treat it like a constant puzzle challenge/competition.
I've been really successful with snowboard math and I've seen so many students go from being bored or overwhelmed to finding their place in the math classroom.
More 5th/6th grade snowboards coming in the future!