Assessment is essential in Guided Math because it drives instruction. When working with small groups of students, you want to group them with similar learning goals. I want to work with students that are struggling to understand place value at the same time. This way my lessons are focused and succinct. Much like Guided Reading, I will need to constantly be assessing and evaluating student need. Once a student has mastered a skill they need to move onto a new skill. this is why the groups need to remain fluid. No one keeps a young reader in the letter id/sounds group once they are putting the sounds together to form words, the same goes for math. Why hold a child back?
I use a combination of assessments. As I mentioned before, I have a plethora of district mandated assessments. Luckily, the Beginning of Year assessment has been created to assess learning from Kindergarten. I can immediately look at the data to see what skills my students are struggling to master. Additionally, I can utilize our MTSS screener to identify areas that need to be mastered. Paired with my observations this is always a good place to start.
As I start to work with groups, I can give quick assessments to look for understanding and mastery of the skills. Often first graders come back to school and just need a refresher on certain skills. This way I am keeping my student's learning moving forward.
I have multiple assessments that are provided for my use by my district. These assessments are to identify holes in student learning based on my instruction. By implementing Guided Math, I feel like I will be better meeting all student need rather than just noting that Suzie doesn't understand place value -- and moving on, because that's what the pacing guide says!
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