Here are the “winners” of my random drawing for the Math Fluency Assessments Pack.
A couple of things about the Math . . . I was so sick of it that when I wrote yesterday’s post, I was afraid I wasn’t clear. So I’d like to explain some things. In the interest of being thorough. Unbelievably, I don’t think I went on and on about it enough yesterday. I know. I’m dumbfounded, too.
1. I think the best thing about this math is that students only test when they feel ready. Over the years, I’ve always had one (or two or seven) students that would freak about the timed tests. They would either hyperventilate before the test, during the test, or cry afterwards. It was too much pressure, apparently. I don’t know why this would happen. Especially because if I had recess duty earlier, my Mad Minute might turn into Mad Four Minutes. Or Mad Five Minutes. Or what have you while I took a mini break. I certainly wasn’t putting any pressure on them. I blame society.
When they do bring this new version back to class to be tested, they’re not exactly timed. I do want my kids to be fluent so I feel they should be able to produce the answer in about one to two seconds. You know – like a sight word. When a kid reads the word “the” as “the” instead of “tuh huh eh”, I know they know the word. The same is true for a student who answers 8 to the flashcard 4+4 compared to someone who says, “Um, uh,” Sigh. Scratch head. Count on fingers behind back. Count again. “Eight?”
2. I like the idea of a computer program . . . except that I only have two computers in my room of which only one is nice and easy going. The other one is old and grumpy and we have to tiptoe around it. On most days, I speak nicely to it, but there are times when I have to show it who’s boss. Which is a technology person from the district. Not to mention, not all my students have access to a computer at home. Sad, but true. And again, I worry about the kids counting on their fingers as fast as they can in front of the computer. I don’t know.
3. That’s all. Again, I hope I don’t sound holier than thou. I’m just not going to grade those tests again. Or look up data on a computer that may or may not be working that day. Along with the internet. Does that happen at your school? Then I have to crawl around on the floor under the counter and see what’s going on with the cord. And then I inevitably find mice droppings and freak out. Or I find gross bugs and freak out. Or a cobweb gets all over me and I freak out. Or I find forty-two pencils because my kids promised me they would keep our pencils organized, but instead, they lost them. So I freak out. And then I say very calmly, “The computer isn’t working.” And when no one is looking, I hit it.
Onto the Wine Trolley which is always working!