Archive for January 4th, 2011

The Importance of Students Setting Math Goals

Posted on January 4, 2011. Filed under: Assessment, Classroom environment, Differentiated Instruction, Mathematical Proficiency | Tags: , , , , |

It’s a New Year!  It’s time to think, reflect and plan…that leads me right into a discussion of setting math goals with students.  The research shows that verbal and visual feedback on performance has an impact on student achievement!  Students need to know how they are doing and how to get better at it.  They need time to process that information.  The research shows that when feedback is displayed in a graph format students “get it” even more (Fuchs & Fuchs; Gunter, Miller, & Venn, 2003; Sutherland & Snyder, 2007 cited in Figarola, Gunter, Reffel, Worth, Hummel, Gerber 2008). Moreover, researchers found that when students received feedback and set goals, they got better in math (Codding, Lewandowski, and Eckert 2005 cited in Figarola et. al 2008 ).

Figarola et. al, found that students both with and without dis/Abilities could benefit from  using computers to graph their math progress. These researchers argue that once teachers figure out how to automate the process of graphing the data, that it is easy and that “graphs serve as a powerful visual means to document student progress on an ongoing basis and can be shared with parents and administrators.”  Also, teachers can make quick instructional decisions based on the graphs.

Try graphing the data and having your students set goals based on that data!  When students know where they are going, they are much more likely to get there!


(See this article about first and second graders graphing the data and action planning and not only meeting but exceeding their goals!)

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki


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