Math Assessment FAQ

What is competency-based assessment?

In our math class, we are adopting a competency/skill based approach. In this approach we have divided each curricular strand into a series of goals and related skills. As we progress through the material, students will be assessed on their ability to demonstrate the math concept or skill. For some students, they may only reach competency after the formal unit has been completed… and that’s okay! Just like learning to walk, different kids learn at different times. For more information on this philosophy, please read my “Math Assessment Philosophy” page HERE.

What homework will be assigned and is homework assessed?

There will be three types of math homework:

To Finish Work that they already started in class (this will usually be in the form of a paper-and-pencil worksheet) – for each of these tasks, either a picture or video of the answers will be posted on the class twitter feed. Students are expected to complete the work, then check their answers online. I will NOT be collecting this type of homework but rather taking up any question that students still do not understand after looking at the answer key.

To Complete Weekly “Mathspace” tasks. Each week I will post 1-2 tasks on Mathspace. The topics of these tasks will pertain to the topics we will be covering during the week. Students will be responsible for completing these tasks at some point throughout the week. I am able to view who completed the tasks, which questions required hints and videos, and the total amount of questions completed correctly.

To Work on a Previously Assessed Topic. At any time throughout the term, students are encouraged to review their online assessment tracker and identify those areas with which they demonstrated an understand of “Not Yet”, “Getting There” or “Has It” on a summative task (SWYK or project). If students would like to improve their grade, they must attend extra help sessions, complete some extra practice at home, try some online resources from Mathspace or the class website and/or work with a parent or tutor and then submit a request for reassessment.

Homework will not be formally assessed; however, the homework is important practice which will help students to reinforce the concepts in class. Students not completing homework will get “fined” (see the class economic program for details) and homework completion will make up a portion of the “responsibility” learning skill on the report card.

How do I use/navigate the online assessment tracker?

An online assessment tracker has been shared with each student (and his/her parents). This tool will be tracking the achievement of the student in each competency throughout the year. Check out the video below for more information:

I’m still confused about how to book a re-assessment?

Not all students will fully understand a concept by time the summative assessment rolls around. Saying that, I am a big believer in giving students additional time and resources in order to develop a solid understanding.

If a student has an assessment of “not yet”, “getting there” or “has it” on a particular competency, they are encouraged to continue to seek help on that topic (even if it is no longer our focus in class). They can use the resources in the student workspace, come for extra help at lunch, and use the MathSpace e-textbook to clarify their understanding.

When they believe they are ready to be re-assessed on the topic, they can submit a re-assessment request form. Once the form is submitted, the student must then come to room N205 (our classroom) at the beginning of lunch on the following Thursday. Failure to show up to this re-assessment day will result in their request being cancelled.

I was away on a test day, what happens now?

If you miss a test day, I will try my best to have to write it during class on the day you return to class. If time is not available for this to happen, all missed tests are written at lunch on Thursday in room N205 (as per the “Missed Test” policy outlined HERE).

I can’t get my assignment done on time, what do I do?

If an assignment is due and you will not be able to complete it on time, email your teacher and let them know as soon as possible. Let them know why it won’t be done and a date in which it will be completed.

If you do not email your teacher then the steps outlined on the policy document for missed assignments will be followed. Read the whole policy HERE.

First Day Information

The first day of school is only 5 days away and I couldn’t be more excited to hit the ground running with this amazing bunch of students. It was wonderful to meet so many of you at Wednesday’s orientation and BBQ.

Thank you to everyone who has filled out the online questionnaire. The feedback is so helpful and I appreciate the time you took to complete it. For those parents who have not yet had a chance, please take a moment to provide some insight into your child:

Access PARENT QUESTIONNAIRE here

Since I am asking for a little information about you, I figured it is only fair that I share some info about me. Click HERE to read some more about Mr. Fischer.

First Day Info

On the first day, ALL grade 7 students are to report to the cafeteria gym by 8 am. Our homeroom is 7-11 and Mr. Ferguson and I will be sharing the homeroom duties. Every day will start with phys ed with Mr. Ferguson – a great way to help you wake up! On that first day, just bring everything (lunch, backpack, etc…) to the gym until all the classes get sorted. It will most likely take most of period 1 to get organized. Following that, you will join me in our classroom where agendas, schedules and other forms will be distributed and lockers will be assigned.

What do you need:

  • pencil case
  • calculator
  • pencils
  • a couple of pens
  • a lock (make sure you practice!)
  • your lunch
  • a refillable water bottle

In terms of technology, a Chromebook is a helpful tool to have. Our class has 12 and we can always borrow additional ones if needed. Don’t feel as though you have to run out and buy a Chromebook before Tuesday! As for cell phones, they will remain in student lockers and will not be coming into the classrooms unless otherwise directed by the teacher.

Class Economics

To help our classroom run smoothly, everyone needs to help out. With the goal to promote financial literacy and responsibility, students are required to apply for jobs in order to earn a salary. Students must earn money in order to pay for their desk as well as any other fines that they may incur throughout the year. Bonus opportunities will also be made available to students in order to help supplement their income. Students are encouraged to save their money in order to purchase property (condos), purchase and rent supplies, and to participate in auctions and other activities. The first contract period is for September and October. Will we be discussing this program more in class and students will be applying for jobs this week.

For a complete outline of the economics program including a list of available job, click HERE.

Other School Policies

We have recently revised the school code of conduct as well as our assessment and technology policies. Although students will be receiving a paper copy of the policies on Tuesday, it is worthwhile to familiarize yourself with these documents.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email me. I hope that everyone has a wonderful long weekend and I’ll see you bright and early next Tuesday!

Welcome and Parent Questionnaire

I have four of my own children, this year entering Grades 6, 5, 3 and 1, each with their own unique set of strengths and challenges. The first day of school (drop off, finding classes/teachers, seeing old friends) is just too hectic of a time to convey these observations and I have often wished that I had a way to let my children’s teachers know about them before school started.

Three years ago, I started sending out a parent survey about a week or so before the start of school. I want to get parental input on questions like: “What is the most important thing I should know about your child?” and “How has the overall ‘school’ experience been for your child?” as well as knowing what commitments my students might have outside of the classroom. I have found the feedback gained from these questionnaires invaluable in helping to provide a welcoming environment and to help transition my students to Grade 7. 

I will be sending an email out to all parents who have included an email in their registration AND have filled out the anti-spam paperwork but for those who have not received the email and would like to provide input, please feel free to access the survey below:

Access PARENT QUESTIONNAIRE here

I look forward to working with all families as we launch the 2019-2020 school year. I am so excited to be back at Holy Trinity and am looking forward to September 3!