First off, we had such a great time meeting so many people at MABE last week! Thanks to everyone who came to our ZONES Math session. And, a huge thanks to everyone who liked our Facebook page! We are so excited to stay connected with you!
There are so many things I want to write about... and my list keeps growing!
For today, we are going to focus on conferencing. Conferencing is one of my favorite things about ZONES Math, because I gain insight into my students. It also allows me to slow down and make a personal connection with my students, which is always hard to do in a classroom of 28+ kids!
The big question is - what do you DO when conferencing with a student? Your conference time is quick (5 minutes or less!) and laser-focused. You conference with students in the zone they currently are working in.
Laney Sammons, in her book Guided Math, states "Teachers probe to find just what students are thinking, understanding, and wondering... Students come to see teachers as partners in their learning journeys" (pg. 211-212). Sammons bases the math conferencing steps on the work of Lucy Calkins, who developed the writing workshop model.
The steps in a math conference include:
1. Research student understanding by observing and asking specific questions such as:
3. Teach to student need: Use demonstration, guided practice, or explicit teaching.
4. Link to the future: Explicitly tell the student what he / she has done using language from the standards, and remind her / him of what to do in the future.
Remember, these conferences should take 5 minutes or less! They are quick and focused.
So how do you keep track of conferences? There are several options:
2. Brightloop is a free website that makes keeping track of student conferences so easy! You can take pictures, track goals, and even send notes home to families via email.
3. Create a google form using Google Drive. Your responses will go directly to a spreadsheet, making it easy to track and organize your notes.
1. Use our conferencing form! It walks you through each step, and you can keep them in a binder or print them directly on STICKY NOTES!
What is your preferred method of tracking student conferences?
What questions do you have about conferencing with students?
Leave us a comment below!
We're glad you're here!
Rescue your math class with ZONES:
How can we help?