Exit Tickets

Hi everyone! I know it’s been a while since I posted. Sometimes life just gets in the way, if you know what I mean.

So I’ve been sitting here, getting ready for back to school in September. I know many of you have already gone back, but we go back to school the day after Labor Day. Although we go back later than most, our last day last year was June 28th! It is seriously torture!

So my summer project right now is EXIT TICKETS. I really have love/ hate relationship with exit tickets.

I love them because they give me a quick assessment. I can look quickly at my kids’ exit tickets and know within a minute who needs help and who doesn’t. Exit tickets also help me reflect on my own teaching. Sometimes, you think the class understood something…but they didn’t. The exit tickets will let me know if I need to stop and reteach the skill or the concept. I love how an exit ticket can be really simple, like write 2 words with the short a sound. Exit tickets can be pieces of paper, preprinted, or on post-its.

So, now that I told you why I love exit tickets…let me tell you why I do NOT love exit tickets.

I don’t know how exit tickets or assessments work in your school, but in my school they are expected for every lesson. We are expected to have a checklist for every lesson and an exit ticket for every lesson. Not only are we expected to have an exit ticket for every lesson or small group, the exit tickets can not be generic. They can be “Today I learned…) Our exit tickets have to assess the exact skill or strategy we are teaching. Again, while I definitely see the benefit of checklists and exit tickets sometimes it is not really needed for EVERY lesson.

I love these exit tickets from the Curriculum Corner. If you are looking for exit tickets that you can use with every lesson, then these are great! Unfortunately, these are not really a help to me. ๐Ÿ™

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Not only do we need to use exit tickets for every lesson. They have to be included in our small group instruction for each subject. Exit tickets during math, no problem. We typically work on a new concept or skill everyday. I was able to take my math curriculum, GoMath and create exit tickets for each lesson. So I made 4 different exit tickets for each lesson. This way my exit tickets are differentiated for all of my kids. So far, I am almost finished with the exit tickets for chapter 3. My husband comes home from work and thinks I’m crazy!
You can click on the pictures to check them out!

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Exit tickets during reading…works ok. Let’s be honest, teaching reading skills is not something that can always be assessed after every leading lesson. Think about teaching main idea. Can you imagine expecting your kids to get it after a lesson or two. So one day, I might teach identifying the who and the what of what they are reading (exit ticket 1.) The next day I might teach connecting the who and the what (exit ticket 2.) Then it’s looking for repeated key phrases and ideas (exit ticket 3.) While I have no problem developing exit tickets for each strategy, it is time consuming.

Exit tickets during Science and Social Studies too!! OH MY!
We all know that often times a Science or Social Studies lesson is not a one day lesson. For me it is very difficult to develop exit tickets to assess my kids when the lesson is not over yet. Sometimes I am left with about 20 minutes to teach Science and Social Studies and it is just not enough time!

Here is my biggest problem with exit tickets and maybe you can help me out. I am NOT organized at ALL! Every year I start out really organized. By November, all of my good plans on being organized are gone. I have no problem organizing my exit tickets after they are collected. I collect the exit tickets and read each ticket to see if the kids understood the concept. I use my checklist to record my observations from the exit tickets. I take the exit tickets and sort them into groups based on understanding. I staple the groups of exit tickets on paper and put then into a binder. Now my small groups or my individual conferences are ready! Easy as pie!

So here is where my disorganization comes into play…the collecting of exit tickets.
I have tried all different methods of collecting exit tickets and none of them have really worked for me. Last year, I had a small bin at each table that held the exit tickets and my students would place the competed exit tickets into the bin. I would then walk around and collect the exit tickets. The only problem with that method is often times, the kids mix up the blank exit tickets and the completed exit tickets.

This year I am going to try something new. I bought a pocket chart with 35 pockets because I have 32 second graders. I am going to hang the pocket chart up, maybe on the back of my door and have the kids put their completed exit ticket into their numbered pocket. This way I can see who has completed the exit ticket and who has not.

How do you collect exit tickets?

Thanks for stopping by ๐Ÿ™‚

Rachel

Math Investigations

Hi everyone,

I have 22 days of school left…YES 22! I am so jealous of everyone who is co close to their well deserved summer vacation.

At this time the kids are all starting to go a little crazy. Let’s not forget sitting in the classroom in almost 90 degree weather with no air conditioning! This is the time to do some great partner or group work.

I love math and so do my kids. I wasn’t always a math person. I used to be a reading/ writing person. I even have my Masters with a certification in reading. But somewhere along the way, things changed (Thanks Gael!)

One thing I love doing with my kids throughout the year is Math Exlemplars or as I call them, Math Investigations. Have you done this with your kids? The minute I say we are doing a math investigation, the cheers start. Math investigations work really well at the end of the year also. This is the time of the year when you really get to see the skills and concepts that your students have mastered.

Reflecting back, I should have chosen a more challenging problem for my class to solve. So next week I know to bump it up.

To start, you introduce a challenging word problem to the kids.
Emersion Work:
Time: 10-15 minutes (sometimes a bit more)
-Read the Math Investigation to the class
-Review problem
-What do we know from the problem?
-What do we want to know? What is it asking us to find?
-What do the following words meanโ€ฆ
-How does this problem relate to the math topics we have been leaning about the unit?
-Students try to solve the problem on their own for 10 minutes. (I usually give a little more time.)

Sometimes I am so surprised over the words the kids are unsure about. The words from today’s problem were poked and bulb.
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After the students solve the problem independently, you pair the kids up by like strategies. They don’t necessarily have to have the same answer, but they should have the same method or strategy.

Day 1:
Teaching Point: Mathematicians will solve a math investigation by discussing and working out strategies with a partner or group.
Time: 75 minutes (or however long you have. :))
-After the students are paired up by strategies, review the problem again.
-Students work out the problem together. This promotes the Mathematical Practices. It is great to walk around the room and hear the kids arguing over whose answer is right and why.
I give the partnership one piece of paper so they can work the problem out together.
I also give each partnership a rubric to refer to while working on the problem.
Once the students feel they are finished, they create a math poster showing how they solved the problem
-As the students are working, I walk around the room and ask guided questions: Why are you using this strategy? Does this make sense? What in this problem told you to…? and similar questions.

Here is the rubric (Thanks Lauren.)
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Here is the conference note sheet I use (Thanks again Lauren!.)
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Here are some of my kids’ posters. It’s amazing to see the different strategies.
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Come back tomorrow for Math Investigations Part II – A gallery walk and making revisions.

Leave a comment to let me know what you think. Have you done math investigations with your kiddos? Do you think this would be something you might try?

Thanks for stopping by and saying hi,
Rachel