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Preparing for TAKS. Elementary Mathematics. Ready or not-here we come…. TAKS. General Overview on TAKS. New assessment mandated by SB 103 Exit level graduation requirement at Grade 11 Exceeds the cognitive rigor of prior statewide assessments Includes technology at the high school level.

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preparing for taks

Preparing for TAKS

Elementary Mathematics

general overview on taks
General Overview on TAKS
  • New assessment mandated by SB 103
  • Exit level graduation requirement at Grade 11
  • Exceeds the cognitive rigor of prior statewide assessments
  • Includes technology at the high school level
griddable items
Griddable Items
  • These items are included at all levels.
  • The majority of items on the test will remain multiple choice.
  • Griddable items allow students to work the problem and find the solution, independent of answer choice influences.
things to keep in mind
Things to Keep in Mind
  • Students should be offered opportunities to practice gridding answers.
  • Leading zeroes are not required and will not be scored as incorrect during electronic scoring.
  • Gridding should match the current approach to recording numbers used in the classroom.
sample grids secondary level
Sample Grids–Secondary Level

GRADE 6/7/8

GRADE 9/10/11

sample griddable item
SampleGriddable Item

Grade 7

Objective 1

mathematics charts
Mathematics Charts
  • New shading for easier reading
  • Two-sided—conversions and rulers on the front, formulas on back
  • Formulas represented in two ways
  • Closely aligned with instructional materials
measurement items
Measurement Items
  • Precision to the nearest eighth of an inch
  • Precision to the nearest millimeter in metric
  • Application-based
  • Strong connection to measurement found in real-life situations
  • Identified by “Use the ruler on the Mathematics Chart to…”
taks teks assessment
TAKS = TEKS Assessment
  • Item alignment with state curriculum standards
  • Alignment between grade level assessments (difficulty level assumed)

Student expectation statements introduced at

one grade level and not assessed will most likely

be tested the following year.

teks statement grade 3
TEKS StatementGrade 3

(3.11) Measurement. The student selects and

uses appropriate units and procedures

to measure length and area. The

student is expected to:

(B) Use linear measure to find the perimeter of a shape.

teks statement grade 7
TEKS StatementGrade 7

(7.9) The student solves application problems involving estimation and measurement. The student is expected to:

(A) Estimate measurement and solve application problems involving length (including perimeter and circumference), area, and volume.

Find the exact number of cubes measuring 3 centimeters on an edge that will fill a box shaped like a rectangular
  • prism that measures 24 centimeters by 18 centimeters by 9 centimeters.

Objective 4


teks statement exit level
TEKS Statement Exit Level

G(b)(4) The student uses a variety of representations to describe geometric relationships and solve problems.

(A) The student selects an appropriate representation ([concrete], pictorial, graphical, verbal, or symbolic) in order to solve problems.

Alignment is KEY!




Texas Mathematics




how to prepare
How to Prepare
  • Develop a variety of ways to explore each Student Expectation.
  • Stay away from “test prep” materials.
  • Use technology often.
  • Attend staff development in identified areas of need.
prepare by
Prepare by:

Critically reading and reflecting on TEKS statements

  • Individually
  • With colleagues
  • With students
  • With parents
prepare by27
Prepare by:
  • Reviewing all TEKS statements
  • Determining what mastery would “look like” in the classroom
  • Thinking about interventions that might be used with struggling students
curricular alignment
Curricular Alignment
  • At a minimum, study the TEKS statements for the grade above and below your level.
  • Use curriculum that “matches” the intent of the TEKS.
    • CLOSE is not acceptable.
    • Select and use instructional materials that meet the spirit of the TEKS.
curriculum should
Curriculum Should
  • Involve challenging activities and lessons that force students to think critically in order to solve problems
  • Be rigorous and require students to apply mathematical knowledge in meaningful ways
teachers should
Teachers Should

Motivate and involve all students, even those struggling with the content, in difficult mathematics problem solving on a daily basis. All students should be required to communicate and process mathematics from the conceptual to symbolic level.

Students are counting on you to help them meet the new graduation requirements in mathematics.

ten practical strategies for helping our students beat the tests through better instruction
Ten Practical Strategies for Helping Our Students Beat the Tests Through Better Instruction

Steve Leinwand

Consultant, NCTM

strategy 1
Strategy 1

Embed math in real world contexts that are rich and engaging and lead to more math questions.

strategy 2
Strategy 2

Incorporate on-going cumulative review into instruction every day.

strategy 3
Strategy 3

Create a language-rich classroom.

strategy 4
Strategy 4

Use every number as a chance to build number sense.

strategy 5
Strategy 5

Draw pictures, create mental images, and foster visualization.

strategy 6
Strategy 6

Build from charts, graphs, and tables.

strategy 7
Strategy 7

Don’t leave out measurement.

strategy 8
Strategy 8

Adapt strategies from what we know about teaching reading.

strategy 9
Strategy 9

Minimize what is no longer important.

strategy 10
Strategy 10

Create a thinking curriculum by asking questions.

the assessment principle nctm 2000
The Assessment Principle NCTM, 2000

Six standards for exemplary mathematics


  • Reflect the mathematics that students know and are able to do
  • Enhance mathematics learning
  • Promote equity
  • Create open processes
  • Promote valid inference
  • Create coherent processes

Conduct informal assessment often

  • To determine students’ level of knowledge
  • To individualize instruction
  • To “catch up” students struggling with content
conceptual knowledge what
Conceptual Knowledge (WHAT)
  • Classification and categories
  • Principles and generalizations
  • Theories, models, and structure
procedural knowledge how
Procedural Knowledge (HOW)
  • Subject-specific algorithms
  • Subject-specific techniques and methods
  • Criteria for determining when to use appropriate procedures
communication why
Communication (WHY)
  • Clear, detailed, and organized analysis to justify the solution using correct terminology and notation
  • Presentation clearly displaying the thinking process
  • Effective communication to target audience
  • Reflection on the concepts required, processes used, and the results drawn to conclusions
forms of assessment
Forms of Assessment
  • Interviews
  • State-developed diagnostics
  • Portfolios
  • Performance Tasks
  • Homework
  • Class work
  • Group work
  • Use resources that are aligned to TEKS.
  • Be cautious of materials that claim to be TAKS-based.
information booklets
Information Booklets:
  • Are TEA-developed resources that mirror previous Educator Guides
  • Include objectives and Student Expectation statements assessed on TAKS
  • Include additional information to clarify the TEKS measured
  • Include sample items
for taks reference
For TAKS reference . . .
  • Use Information Booklets, not Educator Guides, to plan for the new assessment.
  • Do not anticipate that items will reflect the TAAS items; this is an entirely new assessment system.
dana center resources
Dana Center Resources
  • Clarifying activities, lessons, and assessments
  • Staff development through TEXTEAMS
  • Assessments for Algebra I and Geometry
  • Links to other resources
  • Much, much more

web resources
Web Resources

Texas Education Agency

TAKS Information Booklets

instructional leadership
Instructional Leadership

You are instrumental in changing paradigms of the past and creating new tomorrows for your students.

  • All students have ability in mathematics
  • All students are mathematicians
  • You are an educator who can prepare all students for this difficult assessment
contact information
Contact Information
  • Paula Gustafson/Barbara Montalto

TEA Curriculum and Professional Development


  • Sue Borders/Julie Guthrie

TEA Student Assessment