Recommendations for Using the Math WASL
Practice Tests as an Instructional Tool
1. Have students complete a problem.
a. Remind them to underline or circle key words in the directions
b. Show all mathematical decisions
c. Write down the expressions or operations they enter the calculator
d. Avoid run-on equations
e. Label all parts of their work
f. Cross out (don’t erase) any parts of answers they do not want scored
g. Check for the reasonableness of their answers
2. When students have completed their response, have them go back to the
question to make sure all parts have been completely answered. Students
should be instructed to pay close attention to all bolded and bulleted words/items.
Words that are bolded and items that are bulleted correspond to value points on
3. Go over rubric for the item. For short answer and multiple choice questions
(multiple choice questions are always assigned one point):
a. Bring attention to the number of points assigned to the item (2 points for
short answer, and 4 points for extended response).
b. Explain how they earn value points for showing their understanding,
strategies/procedures, and answer.
4. Have students score anchor sets – cover up (hide) actual score so that they can
score using rubric. Repeat this activity several times.
a. This activity can be done whole class or in small groups. If you wanted to
use small groups, you could pass out a different anchor paper to each
group, allow them to score, and have them share why they scored the way
b. Have them keep track of the number of value points earned (It is helpful if
students have copies of the rubric for each item. This way they can
highlight or check-off the bulleted points as they are scoring the item).
c. After calculating the total number of value points, have record the number
of points earned.
5. After going over the anchor sets, have students score their own work using the
6. Give students time to reflect on their work and change their answer so that it
meets grade level standards.
7. Repeat this process for each item.