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Math Standards . James & Tammy Parsons Metro Nashville Public Schools. How to access today’s materials:. James’ email: [email protected] Tammy’s email: [email protected] What are Standards?. A Standards-Based Education System.

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math standards

Math Standards

James & Tammy Parsons

Metro Nashville Public Schools

how to access today s materials
How to access today’s materials:

James’ email: [email protected]

Tammy’s email: [email protected]

a standards based education system
A Standards-Based Education System
  • Standards help ensure students learn what is important, rather than allowing textbooks to dictate classroom practice.
  • Student learning is the focus – aiming for a high and deep level of student understanding that goes beyond traditional textbook-based or lesson-based instruction.
a standards based system
A standards-based system:
  • measures success based on student learning (the achievement of standards) rather than compliance with rules and regulations.
  • aligns policies, initiatives, curriculum, instruction, and assessments with clearly defined academic standards.
  • consistently communicates and uses standards to focus on ways to ensure success or all students.
  • uses assessment to inform instruction.
standards based systems increase student achievement

Standards-based systems increase student achievement.

Students generally learn better in a standards-based environment because everybody’s working towards the same goal.

in standards based systems
In standards-based systems:
  • Teachers know what the standards are and choose classroom activities and teaching strategies that enable students to achieve the standards.
  • Students know the standards, too, and can see scoring guides that embody them. The students can use them to complete their work.
  • Parents know them and can help students by seeing that their homework aligns with the standards.
  • Administrators know what is necessary to attain the standards and provide professional development, resources and materials to ensure that students are able to reach the prescribed standards.
differences between standards based and norm referenced systems

Believe some students are naturally smarter than others.

Content subject matter varies with different groups of students.

Assessments compare what students know to what other students know.


Believe virtually all students can “get smart” through effort.

Content subject matter is the same for all groups of students.

Assessments compare what students know to standards and benchmarks.

Differences Between Standards-Based and Norm-Referenced Systems
differences between standards based and norm referenced systems1

No objective criteria to deploy resources – students who need the most often get the least.

Professional development episodic – one-time workshops.


Resources are deployed as needed for all students to meet standards – students who need more get more.

Professional development focuses on improving instruction so all students meet standards.

Differences Between Standards-Based and Norm-Referenced Systems
about the math standards
About the Math Standards

These are the same across all grades.1. Process2. Number & Operations3. Algebra4. Geometry & Measurement5. Data Analysis, Probability, and Statistics

GLE/CLE (Grade/Course Level Expectations): represent the fundamental goals for student learning that are used by teachers as the principal guide for instructional planning in that grade/course. These are the instructional targets for that grade/course. (GLEs are used in K–8; CLEs are used in Grades 9–12.)
Checks for Understanding: are suggestions for assessing student learning. These formative/summative checks provide information about whether a student has met a particular Grade or Course Level Expectation. Formative assessments are typically embedded within a lesson. (Checks for Understanding are denoted by the checkmark symbol (√).) Checks for Understanding are resources to help the teacher determine if students are mastering what they are expected to learn.
SPI (State Performance Indicators): are the basis for student accountability and are used by the state to prepare standardized test items aligned with corresponding Grade or Course Level Expectations. SPIs are not instructional targets. (There are no SPIs in Grades K–2.)
Process Standard – connected to NCTM process standards. Embeds communication, proof, reasoning, historical development of mathematics, and modeling into one standard. GLEs are same across K–8 grade bands, but the checks for understanding and SPIs differ.
Jefferson County Public Schools

Other website resources:

Item Difficulty


Cognitive Complexity

DOK is a reference to the cognitive demand that must occur to answer a question, perform a task, or generate a product.
    • Adding is a mental process.
    • Knowing the rule for adding is the intended outcome that influences the DOK.
    • Once someone learns the “rule” of how to add, 4 + 4 is DOK 1 and is also easy.
    • Adding 4,678,895 + 9,578,885 is still a DOK 1 but may be more “difficult.”
Webb’s Depth of Knowledge levels

Level 1 Recall and Reproduction

Level 2 Skills & Concepts

Level 3 Strategic Thinking

Level 4 Extended Thinking

level 1 recall
Level 1 Recall

Requires simple recall of such information as a fact, definition, term, or performance of a simple process or procedure. A student answering a Level 1 item either knows the answer or does not.

Level 1 Examples
  • List the numbers from 0-5.
  • Locate or recall facts about squares.
  • Describe the attributes of a cube.
  • Determine the perimeter or area of rectangles given a drawing or labels
  • Identify basic rules for participating in simple games and activities
level 2 basic application of skills concepts
Level 2 Basic Application of Skills & Concepts

Involves some mental skills, concepts, or processing beyond habitual response. Students must make some decisions about how to approach a problem or activity. Keywords distinguishing a Level 2 item include classify, organize, observe, estimate, collect data, and compare data.

Level 2 Examples
  • Compare fractions and decimals
  • Identify and summarize the steps for solving a problem
  • Explain the cause-effect of a given set of data
  • Predict/estimate a logical outcome based on information in a chart or graph
  • Explain how good work habits are important at home, school, and on the job
  • Classify plane and three dimensional figures
  • Describe qualitative change (the older you get, the taller you get)
level 3 strategic thinking
Level 3 Strategic Thinking

Requires reasoning, planning, using evidence, and thinking at a higher level than the previous two levels. The complexity results because the multi-step task requires more demanding reasoning.

An assessment item that has more than one possible answer and requires students to justify the response they give would most likely be a Level 3.

Level 3 Examples
  • Compose and decompose geometric figures to find area/perimeter of irregular figures
  • Analyze or evaluate various representations of data
  • Solve a multiple-step problem and provide support with a mathematical explanation that justifies the answer
  • Explain, generalize or connect mathematical ideas to solve problems and interpret solutions
level 4 extended thinking
Level 4 Extended Thinking

Requires complex reasoning, planning, developing, and thinking, most likely over an extended time. Cognitive demands are high, and students are required to make connections both within and among subject domains.

Level 4 Examples
  • Apply and adapt a variety of appropriate strategies to problem solving, including estimation, and reasonableness of solutions.
verbs and dok
Verbs and DOK

The Depth of Knowledge is NOTdetermined by the verb, but the context in which the verb is used and the depth of thinking (cognitive demand) required.

Same verb—three DOK levels

Level 3-Describe a model that you might use to represent the relationships of the areas of squares and triangles. (requires deep understanding of area and a determination of how best to represent it)

Level 2-Describe the difference between squares and triangles. (requires cognitive processing to determine the differences in the two types of figures)

Level 1-Describe two attributes of a square. (simple recall)


• Depth of Knowledge is a scale of cognitive demand.

• DOK requires looking at the assessment item/standard-not student work-in order to determine the level. DOK is about the item/standard-not the student.

• The context of the assessment item/standard must be considered to determine the DOK-not just a look at what verb was chosen.

click here
Click here:
  • Screen Shot
activities 2 nd grade
Activities 2nd Grade
  • Multiplication Face Cards
  • Number Roads
  • Make a Dollar Game
  • Gorilla Lunch Menu
  • Circle Handout
  • Pattern Block – Equivalent Fractions
  • How Does It Grow
  • Balancing Act
  • Math Machines
  • How Far
  • Create a House Number
  • Mary Had a Little Lamb
  • More than One Story
  • Which is Which
  • Birthday Graph
  • Unlikely/Likely Events
  • How big is your foot?
kwl chart
KWL Chart

What I Know

What I Want To Know

What I Have Learned

activities 5 8
Activities (5-8)
  • Hallways and Bedrooms
  • Quadrilateral Sort
  • Triangle Triangles
  • What’s Your Angle?
  • Tangram Values
  • Polygon Pizzas

GLE Search

activities 5 81
Activities (5-8)
  • A PIN for Mr. Mitchell
  • Remove One

GLE Search

  • Walk the Graph
  • Graphic Stories
  • Building with Toothpicks
  • Exploring Houses
  • Table for 63, please
a standards based education system1

A Standards-Based Education System

Standards-based education is a process for planning, delivering, monitoring and improving academic programs in which clearly defined academic content standards provide the basis for content in instruction and assessment.

Segment 7

Transforming Instruction Through Standards

implications for instructional change directions
Implications for Instructional ChangeDirections
  • Individually read and highlight
    • Traditional instructional aspects in BLUE
    • Transformative aspects in YELLOW.
  • Compare highlights with elbow partner.
  • As a group, use your papers to complete the laminated chart.
    • Match each transformative aspect with its traditional counterpart.
    • Debrief with subsequent slides.
traditional vs transformative
Time is the variable: performance is constant

Goal: expect performance standards to be obtained by all students

Based on spiral learning

Time is constant; performance is the variable

Goal: expect normally distributed performance

Based on linear learning

Traditional vs. Transformative
traditional vs transformative1
Less “coverage” yields more “higher order” cognition

Domains-driven curriculum

Long-term retention

More “coverage” yields less “higher order” cognition

Textbook-driven curriculum

Short-term memorization

Traditional vs. Transformative
traditional vs transformative2


Gifted students allowed time to linger on various topics

Abstract; no concrete basis


Gifted students must keep up pace, potential for burnout

Traditional vs. Transformative
traditional vs transformative3
Emphasis placed on raising underachievers’ performance levels

Socratic, discovery methods

Begins with the end in mind

Emphasis on maintaining timeline, underachievers separated

Lecture, dissemination

Rarely reaches the end

Traditional vs. Transformative
traditional vs transformative4
Time frames collapsed

Teach inquiry

Integrated curriculum

High emphasis on time

Teach content

Segmented curriculum

Traditional vs. Transformative
Segment 9

Making Standards User Friendly

Standards-Based Instruction:

A Melting Pot Approach

  • Working with two variable data
  • Using multiple graphical representations
  • Solve problems using visual representations
  • Use sample data and proportional reasoning to make predictions
  • Use percentages to interpret circle graphs
  • Evaluate experiment design
  • Choose appropriate types of representations for data
  • Move between concrete and abstract representations
  • Use math ideas in multiple settings
  • Understand and apply proportionality
  • Write equations to solve problems using ratio and percent
  • Use ratio and proportion to solve problems
  • Express values as ratios, percents, and fractions
Standards-Based Instruction:

A Melting Pot Approach

What is it about this activity that relates to the idea of a melting pot?

the language of the standards
The Language of the Standards
  • GLE:is a statement that defines what all students should know and be able to do at the end of a given grade level. GLEs add further definition to the content standards and benchmarks.
  • Checks for Understanding:
  • SPI: