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How to Assess Math: A Friendly Debate

There’s always a bit of debating when it comes to talking about how to assess math skills. One question teachers often ask: Should students be allowed to take an assessment more than once? Without a doubt, YES. Let’s talk about why.

Image reads, "A friendly debate on how to assess math and still get the information you need."

How to Assess Math by Knowing Your Students

First, one assessment doesn’t give us all of the information we need. We need to look carefully at our students. Was a student having a bad day? Are they not feeling well? Or did they get enough sleep last night? Are they hungry? Any of these reasons could affect how a student did on the assessment. Make sure to know the whole student.

Can I Identify My Mistake?

When you hand back an assessment to students, give them a chance to take a closer look at it. Can students identify what they did wrong? There’s a huge difference between having no idea where you messed up and realizing you made a minor math mistake.

Image explains how to assess math by asking students "Can you identify your mistake?"

If they can, give your students a chance to fix it! Many students who understand the material can quickly identify silly mistakes. Why should we give a low score to a student who made a silly mistake? Instead, identify the students who truly don’t understand what’s going on and pull them for small group strategy practice!

How to Assess Math Ideas

In the primary grades, especially first and second grades, assessment should not be stressful for students. They’re young. Therefore, they do not need something that is time-intensive and stressful. 

Instead, give students quick exit tickets that are tied directly to the standards. These exit tickets are designed to be completed in 5 minutes or less, which is perfect for young students.

Image shows how to assess math math exit tickets

They’re super quick for teachers to check for understanding, and they’re easy to give back to students who might need to fix any silly mistakes. These math exit tickets are available for kindergarten, first grade, and second grade!

Free Classroom Resources

If you want to make assessments as quick and easy as possible, download these free math exit tickets for kindergarten, first grade, and second grade. You and your students will love how these exit tickets take the pressure off.

Image links to lead magnet for math exit tickets.

Related: Read about 5 of the best assessment ideas you can try in your classroom!

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