Thursday, 19 February 2015

Using Leveled Worksheets to Challenge Math Students

Students enter Grade 9 at Greenwood from a variety of different schools with very diverse backgrounds in math, which leads to a large array of abilities collaborating in one class. To help ensure we are able to reach each and every student in the room, we need to rely on differentiated learning.

One of the most popular tools in the Grade 9 math toolbox is the use of leveled worksheets. The leveled worksheet is a series of questions sorted into levels that progressively increase in difficulty. Each worksheet will have a section to extend students who need a challenge. Students may be asked to explore variations of questions above and beyond the scope of the course.

There are a few different ways in which we employ leveled worksheets in the classroom. Sometimes, we differentiate by speed and allow everyone to start at level one and see how far they can get in a given time period. Other times we will differentiate by readiness and we will either allow students to choose their starting level or guide them to a starting level based on previous assessments. Differentiating by readiness works very well in a diverse classroom because it allows confident students to spend more time challenging themselves with more difficult problems.

The students really like when we work with leveled worksheets because they get immediate feedback and they are able to appropriately challenge themselves.  

Matthew Donkers
Teacher, Math & Physics

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