[MTBoS] Day 4 of a New Year

Day 4 has been the best day yet. I’m really starting to see the students “get it”[1] when it comes to the Visual Pattern math talks, and we’re only 4 days in!!


Here’s a picture that sums up where we are:


Work is underway!

This picture is a good summary for several reasons:

  • I got a ticket out done in every class today! (Progress, wohoo!)
  • The Green means “Got it!” while the pink means “Need help!”. Blue and Yellow are in between.
  • Therefore many students get it, but several have a ways to go.
  • This “Ticket Out” display still has a ways to go: I have to put the meaning of each color somewhere!
  • The Ticket Outs are part of my big personal goal this year, and therefore this is meaningful in a lot of ways. I realized in the past that I’ve hesitated to collect some kind of formative assessment because then I might have to change what I’m doing. Reading (browsing) them all is enough extra work: changing my plans on top of that is even more! However, I’ve come to realize that this is one of the characteristics of good teaching: understanding the students well enough to adapt your teaching frequently. Recognizing that I didn’t want to put that much time in to adapt was a huge hurdle for me and one of the things that has helped me to actually have students do (and collect and read them). Each following day I try to read some and point out good answers and good mistakes (anonymously for the mistakes), and I think it impresses upon the students that I read these and care that they get it.

I’m excited for this year and we’re only 1 week in!


[1] Mostly because of a few that shout “I get it!!!” in the middle of our discussion.




Filed under Teaching

3 responses to “[MTBoS] Day 4 of a New Year

  1. Mary Wong

    How long are you ticket outs? Are they quick questions? Basics? The students place them according to their confidence level? How do you keep up with all the classes every day? What kind of feedback do you give?

    • Thanks, Mary! I do them the last 5 minutes of class, usually a review from the class period. Sometimes a trickier one, but mostly to make sure students know what I think they know. At the end of the day I grab them and put them in a file folder so I can read them home. The next day I pull out a few and we might have a short 1 minute discussion. This reminds them of what we did yesterday and lets them know I care about what they write on these since they’re not usually graded.

  2. Mary Wong

    BTW, I love this idea.

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