Guided Math Research
Eric Jensen and Brain Based Learning
He details some of strategies that put learners into the optimal learning states.
- Balanced Guided Math Groups incorporate activities that utilize these strategies. During guided math rotations, students change from one activity to another. The groups rotate between activities which intensify and de-intensify, which reengage students. Eric Jensen also describes that student’s minds are reawakened when the students go from individual to group work. The fourth one that is utilized during guided math groups is students changing locations for activities excites them and prepares them to continue learning math.
- Teachers give students detailed input to guide their learning. This input includes increased frequency of feedback to the students during teacher led group and positive social bonding during cooperative student problem solving exercises.
- On page 146 of Eric Jensen’s Brain Based Learning book, he details critical skills that Balanced Guided Math integrates into lessons that teach mathematical thinking: categorizing, counting, labeling, language, cause/effect, and thinking.
David Sousa and How the Brain Learns Mathematics
David Sousa defines critical steps for guiding practice in his book. The following techniques are specifically used with the Balanced Guided Math framework.
- Limit the amount of new material to practice. (1 to 2 skills per week)
- Limit practice to short, intense periods of learning.
- Determine the frequency of practice. (New skills/more frequently & within varied contexts)
- Assess the accuracy of practice with feedback.
- Include time on reasoning and deep understanding. (Why and How?)
- Constantly review and connect math concepts.
- Benjamin Bloom’s Taxonomy,
- Fountas & Pinnell’s Guided Reading,
- Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences,
- Robert Marzano and John Kendall’s Designing Standards-Based Districts, Schools, and Classrooms,
- James McMillan’s Classroom Assessment: Principles and Practice for Effective Instruction
- Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe’s Understanding by Design