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Differentiating Math. Using Assessments and Extension Menus to compact and accelerate Math instruction Presented by Cathy Roh and Kris Larson Allen Elementary School GGUSD. What is today’s objective?.

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differentiating math

Differentiating Math

Using Assessments and Extension Menus

to compact and accelerate Math instruction

Presented by

Cathy Roh and Kris Larson

Allen Elementary School


what is today s objective
What is today’s objective?

To share with you a strategy for differentiating instruction in Math using pre-assessments and extension menus

We will be showing you:

  • Hardest 5 quizzes
  • Math Extension Menus
  • Ideas for Classroom Management & Environment
what is the hardest 5 quiz
What is the Hardest 5 quiz?

Pre-assessment tool to check for mastery

5 most challenging questions

5-minute quiz time (unless more time-consuming skill)

Must earn 100%

Two forms: one daily, one weekly

Can be projected or as a paper quiz

Can study ahead of time

Valuable data if whole class tests out (or majority)

when do i give the hardest 5

On Friday, a week before

Give the Hardest 5 Quiz that covers all lessons you will be teaching.


Before the lesson:

Give the Hardest 5 Quiz that covers the lesson you will be teaching that day.

After the Lesson:

Give the Hardest 5 Quiz that covers the lesson you will be teaching the following day.

When do I give the Hardest 5 ?
what does a daily lesson look like
What does a daily lesson look like?
  • Lesson
    • Teach math lesson to class
    • All students must listen and take notes
  • Structured Practice/Guided Practice
    • AMG students excused to work on Extension Menu
      • Expect classroom transition here!
Independent Practice (with non-AMG students)
    • 85% who understand  independent practice
    • 15% who struggled  small group practice
    • Prepare challenge problems
    • Hardest 5 AMG students
    • On-level students
    • Below-level students
what are extension activities
What are Extension Activities?
  • The purpose of Extension Activities is to provide students who have shown mastery on a math concept with opportunities to:
  • Extend their learning
  • Apply mathematical knowledge beyond procedures
  • To connect mathematical knowledge to the real world

Extension Activities are presented on Extension Menus, which provide an activity for every lesson in a Unit, as well as optional activities for student choice.

how do i make extension menus
How do I make Extension Menus?
  • Challenge questions/pages in your text book/T.E.
  • Supplemental challenge activities with your math program
  • Find real world applications for the math concept
what are some sample activities
Multiply Fractions and Whole Numbers

Think Like a Top Chef!

Find or create a recipe that contains at least 3 fractions, no mixed numbers.

Create 3 recipe cards:

First, triple the recipe (multiply every ingredient by 3). Remember, this will triple the amount of people that the recipe will serve.

Second, rewrite the recipe for a party by multiplying everything by 8.

Third, rewrite the recipe for a banquet by multiplying everything by 24.

What are some sample activities?
what are some sample activities11
Lines and Angles Map It!

Create a road map for a fictional city. Your map should include examples of each of the following geometric concepts:

o Point o Line

o Ray o Line segment

o Plane o Right angle

o Acute o Obtuse angle

o Parallel line o Intersecting line

o Perpendicular line

Create a legend to explain where each geometric concept can be found on your map.

Your town should be named, colored, locations should be clearly labeled, and your map should include color where appropriate.

What are some sample activities?
how do i assess extension activities
How do I assess Extension Activities?
  • Rubric should assess:
    • Mathematical Understanding
      • Does the assignment show correct understanding of the math concept?
    • Content
      • Does the assignment follow all directions completely and include all necessary information?
    • Creativity and Effort
      • Is the assignment neat, attractive, creative, and show effort and scholarly pride?
classroom environment

Classroom Environment

How can I organize my classroom to make Hardest 5 run smoothly?

where do i keep a list of math groups
Where do I keep a list of Math Groups?

Math Groups labeled and listed on a classroom Math board (e.g. Team 1/ Team 2 with students numbers listed under the appropriate title)

Location suggestions: whiteboard, sheet protector with a white paper, pocket chart

Other option: Math groups do not have to be displayed; lists can written down and kept by the teacher only

where do i put math extension menus
Where do I put Math Extension Menus?

Pocket files on the Math board or standing file folder that the students have access to

Menu activity resources should be in the same location

Other option: Distribute the Menu to all the students at the beginning of the week; students keep it in a Math folder until the end of the Unit

where do the students who tested out work while i am teaching the lesson
Where do the students who tested out work while I am teaching the lesson?
  • Designated work area(s)
  • Suggestions: classroom library, small group table, computer table
  • Move students in the classroom so table groups can be made into Extension Group work areas
  • Students understand they are to be working quietly during your instruction
troubleshooting how can i ensure that differentiation is a success
Troubleshooting! How can I ensure that Differentiation is a Success?
  • Model expectations for Hardest 5 group
  • Preview Scholar Menu at beginning of unit or on Monday when test-out students are posted
  • Transitions - provide time
  • High standards for Extension Menu
    • Set expectations at the beginning
    • Create a rubric for scholarly work
presented by
Presented by:
  • Kris Larson
    • klarson@ggusd.us
  • Cathy Roh
    • croh@ggusd.us

Allen Elementary

Garden Grove Unified School District