# PACING AND PROCEDURES FOR ELEMENTARY MATH CURRICULUM

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```							   Pittsburgh Public Schools
Office of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development

PACING AND PROCEDURES FOR ELEMENTARY MATH CURRICULUM

General Guidelines

The math curriculum is built around four 80-minute blocks, with one lesson that can be
taught in a single period. Each lesson template provides a structure for the math content
addressed in the lesson. How the content comes alive to the students, techniques to grow
every child’s understanding, and the depth of learning are all part of the teacher craft.

It is strongly recommended that the teacher do the problems (work the math) before
teaching the lesson. Insight gained from doing this will provide important pedagogical
moves for teaching the lesson so that fidelity to the 3-Part lesson design and student
engagement in the Build It-Draw It-Talk it-Write-It format is upheld.

In grades K-2, students participate in daily real-world routines using the number line, grid,
calendar, thermometer and attendance chart to build a strong foundation of our number
system and relationships among numbers, a sense of operations, as well as concepts of
time, temperature and money. Many teachers use a portion of DI time for the routines.

Opening (20 minutes)
Mental Math

Each lesson begins with a mental math routine. The goal of the mental math routine is to
formatively assess understanding of number relationships and operations. It is a “warm-
up” for the brain to engage in mathematical thinking, much like stretching is a warm-up for
aerobic activity. Teachers may select certain mental math problems on the template
matched to most students’ learning needs. If there is a problem with mental math, the
teacher should note the misconception on a clipboard and address it during DI time.

Problem of the Day

To ensure that adequate time is taken for Interactive Learning, teachers can insert this
problem or Math Message (when appropriate) into DI time in order to complete the Opening
activities in 20 minutes. The goal is to provide routine problem solving practice on a regular
basis. Work should be stored in a notebook and monitored routinely by the teacher.

The Pathway to the Promise.TM

We are an equal rights and opportunity school district
Pittsburgh Public Schools
Office of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development

Interactive Learning

Every lesson begins with posing the problem stated on the template as the “Ready, Set, Go”
of the lesson; an important time for students to construct a solution based on prior
knowledge. Teachers circulate to note how students are using manipulatives and drawing
solutions. It sets the stage and provides information for independent/small group practice
during Work time, as well as ongoing information for formative assessment data.

The class comes together and briefly discusses one or two strategies. The Visual Bridge is
then shown, taking the students understanding from the concrete model to the
representational picture in order to prepare for the written practice in the book or work mat.

Work time (20 minutes)
The Guided Practice (Do You Know and Do You Understand) are a few problems to be used
as a check for understanding. The teacher may pull a small group to answer these
questions while the rest of the class begins the problems indicated on the template. All
students may not need to do these problems.

Sense-Making activities are chosen from the Independent Practice (procedural) and Problem
Solving questions (conceptual). After seven minutes (most teachers use a timer), students
begin specific questions assigned in the Problem Solving section that talk about what the
numbers mean. Students should be encouraged to build their answers with models and
manipulatives, use number lines and grids as scaffolds if needed, represent their thinking
through diagrams in their journals, talk about their solutions in their partnerships, and
explain their reasoning in writing.

Teachers kid watch, noting the misconceptions and gaps in understanding shown in the
work. The additional activities are options for teachers to use to help students develop
conceptual understanding.

During Work time, teachers should:

   Listen actively to students’ mathematical ideas
   Encourage students to be resources for each other
   Ask questions that may help them understand how students are thinking
   Try to build on whatever ideas the students share
   Choose students for the Closing

The Pathway to the Promise.TM

We are an equal rights and opportunity school district
Pittsburgh Public Schools
Office of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development

Closing (20 minutes)

Teachers should be intentional about using this time for adequate discussion to ensure that
students have deepened their understanding of the Essential Question of the lesson. The
focus of discussion is to clarify content that is unclear or misunderstood. Teachers, as
facilitators, take a neutral position and allow for students to be resources for each other.

Students are purposefully chosen based on their thinking revealed during Work time. Based
on notes from kid watching, two to three students present their work, from the least to the
most understanding. Whole group engagement to answer accountable talk questions allows
students to focus on the mathematical content of the lesson, draw connections between
new and prior knowledge, share representations and strategies that reveal their
understanding, discuss misconceptions and reinforce new learning with mathematical
language.     Teachers ask the Essential Question again and allow students who are stuck

Quick Check (5 minutes)

The Quick Check is formative assessment that provides real-time information for groupings
for Differentiated Instruction. Some teachers write the question on chart paper, and have
students answer in words and sketches on a post-it note. This serves as a class artifact and
a resource to access prior knowledge when related content is presented.

Differentiated Activities (20 minutes)
Teachers use this time to group students according to the level of understanding related to
specific content skills and concepts. Some elect to hold these activities before the core
lesson. In that groups are flexible and meet specific skill gaps, a reteaching activity may be
offered before the core lesson to the whole class. Activities and groups change as often as
data indicates. Games and Math Boxes are essential for distributed practice, specified in the
DI packets, and should be assigned to all learning groups on a regular basis.

Students should be showing work in journals or notebooks. Many teachers collect them
periodically to monitor understanding and provide feedback about level of expectation.
Problem solving that is to be completed and revised is stored for comment in Do/Done
pocket folders.

The Pathway to the Promise.TM

We are an equal rights and opportunity school district

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