Sample Skill-Based Math Lesson

This sample lesson illustrates how LiteracyTA's 10 Instructional Moves for Skill-Based Instruction can be used in a math classroom. The specific content of the lesson has been deliberately removed so that math teachers can see how they might teach their content through academic reading, writing, and speaking skills.

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Instructional Moves
Activities
CCS for Mathematical Practice
College and Career Readiness Standards
Before Reading

Essential Question: How do we establish relevance and stimulate recall so that students can receive new knowledge?

Move 1
Identify Standards

Teacher identifies standards for both content and skills. Common Core Mathematical Practices and College and Career Readiness standards should be included in each lesson. Teacher selects Common Mathematical Practices from Common Core standards for Math. Teacher selects reading, writing, and speaking standards from Common Core College and Career Readiness standards.

Move 2
Select a Text
(i.e., textbook, supplemental workbook, or another available source)

Teacher selects a text that can effectively teach the content and skill standards identified in Move 1.

N/A N/A

Move 3
Teach critical concepts

Scan for unknown words

Teacher explicitly teaches critical concepts for a chapter or section while students complete LiteracyTA’s Math Critical Concepts organizer.

Before learning the math in a new section, students scan the text for unknown words and write those words in LiteracyTA’s Math Scanning for Vocabulary organizer. Teacher works with students to help define and explain unknown words.

N/A

Language
L4 and L6

Move 4
Performance Task

Teacher identifies a performance task that will measure students’ understanding and growth. Performance task should be related to content and Common Core's Common Mathematical Practices. Performance task should include demonstration of Common Core's College and Career Readiness literacy standards.

Move 5
Create Interest

Bridge Prior Knowledge

Students preview a new section in the math book, looking at models, examples, and visuals. They can work individually or in groups to answer questions like,

  • "What do I know about this type of math?"
  • "What do I understand from looking at the examples?"
  • "How are the visuals related to the type of math I will be expected to know and do?"

Students use LiteracyTA’s Previewing a Math Section Worksheet to help them complete the task.

A. Teacher makes available a problem from a new section and directs students to solve or simplify. Students use LiteracyTA’s Math Step Notes to complete the task in groups, recalling prior knowledge. Students write their steps to the process using appropriate content vocabulary.

B. Groups show their answers to the teacher. Students stand and explain their thinking. Teacher creates a safe environment for sharing and discussing.

C. Students use LiteracyTA’s Math Agree/Disagree Table to critique their peers’ reasoning and solutions.

D. Based on the formative assessment, teacher provides another problem with or without support. Each problem should present a new layer of difficulty. Students should be encouraged to use the examples in the book if they are struggling to complete the task.

Practice 1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.

Practice 2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

Practice 3: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

Reading Informational Text
RI1

Speaking and Listening
SL1, SL4 and SL6

Writing
W2

During Reading

Essential Question: How do we create self-directed learners so that students take more responsibility for their learning and become independent thinkers?

Move 6
Map Standards to Literacy Skills

Teacher selects specific literacy skills to explicitly teach and practice content.

Teacher selects skills from LiteracyTA's Skill Library to support Common Mathematical Practices. Teacher selects additional academic skills from LiteracyTA's Skill Library to support Common Core College and Career Readiness standards.

Move 7
Pre-Determine Scaffolds

A. Teacher identifies areas of need and meets students where they are. Teacher strategically selects scaffolds and appropriate tools to explicitly teach students how to solve/simplify math problems.

B. Teacher models math practices while students use LiteracyTA’s Math Step Notes to record instruction.

C. Students use their Math Step Notes, Critical Concepts, and Scan for Vocabulary to help them solve/simplify problems.

Practice 4: Model with mathematics.

Practice 5: Use appropriate tools strategically.

Practice 6: Attend to precision.

Speaking and Listening
SL1, SL4 and SL6

Move 8
Collaborative Work

A. Students are given problems to solve/simplify in groups.

B. Teacher facilitates pair-share activities, allowing students to explain their thinking and justify their process and solutions.

C. Students discuss application patterns, properties, and evaluate reasonableness of results and solutions after each problem or set of problems.

D. Students share what they understand and what they still need to know.

E. Teacher addresses concerns in the room.

F. Teacher reviews challenging concepts and reteaches aspects of the lesson/section.

Practice 1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.

Practice 2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

Practice 3: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

Practice 5: Use appropriate tools strategically.

Practice 6: Attend to precision.

Practice 7: Look for and make use of structure.

Practice 8: Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

Speaking and Listening
SL1, SL4 and SL6

Writing
W2

After Reading

Essential Question: How do we increase retention of critical content?

Move 9
Develop Assessments

A. Teacher provides problems for students to solve/simplify on their own. Teacher checks for understanding using whiteboards or another effective strategy.

B. Teacher checks in with students and asks them direct questions that can be answered with thumbs up or down, whiteboards, red-yellow-green cards, or another engagement strategy that provides instant feedback to the teacher.

C. Students take group quizzes and discuss how each problem is solved.

Practice 1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.

Practice 2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

Practice 3: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.

N/A

Move 10
Reflect on Learning

Teacher reflects on the effectiveness of the lesson and evaluates teaching methods and activities.

Students create an organizer that explains critical concepts or summarizes the math in the section.

Students track progress and set goals for learning.

Students evaluate progress and reflect on what they know and still need to learn.

Students discuss strengths and weaknesses.

N/A

Speaking and Listening
SL1, SL4 and SL6

Writing
W2

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Literacy Standards In Action

We've mapped our literacy lessons and reading, speaking, and writing skills to state standards, Common Core, and NGSS. The standards are "the what" to teach. Our lessons are "the how" to meet the expectations defined by the standards. Click on the links below to view our quick reference table that maps standards to literacy lessons.

R1
Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; and cite specific evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
W2
Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
SL1
Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
SL4
Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
SL6
Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and communicative tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.
L4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases by using context clues, analyzing meaningful word parts, and consulting general and specialized reference materials, as appropriate.
L6
Acquire and use accurately a range of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases sufficient for reading, writing, speaking, and listening at the college and career readiness level; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.
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