College Ready Math by Battelle Education

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BATTELLE Education



To be prepared for success in the stem fields, students need more than content knowledge. They need to learn to work together, be creative problem solvers, and effectively communicate their ideas and accomplishments. Likewise, to elevate teachers to coach kids at this higher level, they need to be leaders and designers of engaging work. They need to be responsive to students’ everyday needs. Literacy and math are essential for preparing students to be successful in college and career. They are the languages used to communicate. Battelle Education’s College Ready Math and College Ready Literacy series focus on training teachers to shift their instructional practices to embed the math and literacy skills that prepare students for success. Teachers who have taken this training have learned to create challenging yet attainable experiences which are engaging to students. Experiences which are aligned to standards and are relevant to the real world.College Ready Math and College Ready Literacy help teachers help students build lasting skills. This is not a silver bullet. Effective teaching that inspires kids is hard work. It means taking risks. Opening your doors. Connecting with other effective teachers. Implementing the best practices modeled by expert coaches. Sharing outcomes. Asking questions. Reflecting and acting on feedback from experienced coaches. And then‌.repeating the whole process. College Ready Literacy and College Ready Math provide this opportunity. They provide the opportunity for teachers to learn from teachers with experience successfully implementing these methods. They provide multiple opportunities for teachers to implement effective practices, and structured time for teachers to receive feedback from expert teacher coaches. Through several rounds of implementation, Battelle Education helps teachers routinely use these instructional strategies. After a year of implementation, your team will be invited to join additional school teams from across the state to create a strategic plan for the following year, incorporating lessons learned.

This eBook is designed to help you learn more about College Ready Math and to consider what steps need be taken prior to enrolling. It will also help you understand what your school team will learn throughout the training.

What is College Ready Math? College Ready Math supports teachers in shifting their instructional practices by implementing the Math Design Collaborative (MDC) framework. This framework embeds formative assessment teaching practices using rigorous and real world math problems. It is designed for math teachers teaching grades six through high school. It is built to bring to the surface how students think about math concepts. By voicing their own thinking, including misconceptions, students can talk the problem out. Students are then able to determine which language and reasoning methods work for them. The first math practice standard is for students to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. Yet often teachers can miss opportunities to allow students to struggle through problems to build this skill. With this professional development series, teachers learn to scaffold students through a productive struggle with math. Teachers identify conceptions and misconceptions in student work. Using this data, teachers become coaches, giving effective feedback, engineering discussions, and activating students as resources for one another. What do we see happen in the classroom? Engaged students who are discussing and debating math and re-energized teachers who are inspired by the changes they see in students.

This outline will guide you through the structure of the College Ready Math series. It will also help you consider key questions prior to getting started. Additionally, the timeline on the next page is a suggested schedule for rolling out the series to a team of educators. Each component of the timeline is discussed in more detail as you read through this overview.

PREPARE AND ORIENT Who should attend? What do participants need to know ahead of time? Time requirements and considerations Orientation and training When should we start?

APPLY, REFLECT AND REFINE How do teachers get in the classroom support? How do we create buy-in from school administrations?

ASSESS, SUSTAIN AND GROW How does College Ready Math help schools meet their math learning goals? How can one of my teachers become a coach on the MDC tools? How can we connect and learn from other schools?








Teams register

Overview Training

Round one: Job embedded professional development

Round two: Job embedded professional development

Each school’s team should consist of 3 or more teachers, the principal

(Full group – 2 days)

(School group – 2.5 days) Takes place at your school.

(School group – 2.5 days) Takes place at your school.

(Full group – 1 day) Takes place in a central location.

and one central office leader

Takes place in a central location. Day 1 (afterschool session):

Day 1 (afterschool session):

Session will cover:

• Identify key math skills and connection to Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

• Identify key math skills and connection to Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

• Planning for robust implementation

• Review student work and name the common issues and misconceptions

• Review student work and name the common issues and misconceptions

• Record in student growth database

• Record in student growth database

• Alignment with Common Core State Standards, curricula and assessments

Session will cover: • What is formative assessment and how it helps • Key components of the MDC formative assessment lessons • How to use the College Ready Math specific teacher resources • Connecting the strategies of formative assessment to the MDC method lessons

SUMMER Goals and full implementation

• Develop student feedback questions

• Develop student feedback questions

• Surfacing student misconceptions and how to shape feedback to students

• Plan for lesson

• Plan for lesson

Days 2 and 3

Days 2 and 3

• Finding links between MDC’s formative assessment lessons and the Ohio Teacher Evaluation System

• Implement lesson with support from the Battelle Education teacher coach

• Implement lesson with support from the Battelle Education teacher coach

• Determining a lesson to implement for round one of on-site professional development

Day 3 (after school session)

Day 3 (after school session)

• Review student work and name the common issues and misconceptions

• Review student work and name the common issues and misconceptions

• Record in student growth database

• Record in student growth database

• Identify student growth and concepts that need work

• Identify student growth and concepts that need work

• Connect to formative assessment

• Connect to formative assessment

• Creating ongoing opportunities for peer to peer collaboration


Who should attend? College Ready Math is designed for educators teaching math in grades six through high school. The more math teachers that participate the better. Three or more champion teachers should be identified to begin this initiative. Why? Having multiple teachers participate allows teachers to observe and learn from one another during implementation. You learn so much through implementation and feedback from an expert coach. You continue to learn outside official sessions by observing a colleague implement the same lesson or a similar lesson. Your team should also include a building administrator. An administrator should go through the training so that they understand the shifts teachers are being asked to make in their classrooms. If a building leader comes into a math classroom in the middle of a classroom challenge it will look chaotic, with groups of kids discussing and debating math. We want administrators to understand the structure so that they know what to expect and why. We also want your team of teachers to have a champion. An administrator will help prioritize resources. For example, making time for teachers to go into one another’s classrooms for observations—a crucial part of implementation—will be easier to arrange with administrative support.

What do participants need to know ahead of time? Participants need to know the expectations and the benefits of the program. In College Ready Math we ask teachers to implement four classroom challenges throughout the year. The math classroom challenges typically take between 80 and 120 minutes each for in-class implementation. Two of these take place with support from a coach. The other two (or more) take place without the coach present.

Time requirements and considerations For College Ready Math, teachers and administrators should expect to either take two sub days for the initial overview training or attend the twoday overview session during the summer break. Additionally, participating teachers will be asked to attend four two-hour after school sessions throughout the school year during their job embedded trainings. If you happen to have a common two-hour planning time twice a week, it is possible to use this time in place of an after school session.

Additionally, teachers and administrators are invited to come back together after the school year ends to reflect on the year and create a strategic plan for math for the following school year.

Orientation and training In the two-day overview training, math teachers and their school leaders come together to learn about the Math Design Collaborative classroom challenges. These lessons are grounded in the content and practices laid out in the common core standards for math. They are designed to: • help teachers reveal and develop students’ conceptions and misconceptions of key mathematical ideas

• help students connect multiple math concepts • assess and develop students’ ability to apply math in different situations • help students apply their thinking to non-routine or unstructured problems

• challenge students with problems which reflect both the real world and pure mathematics. During the overview training, teacher coaches model Math Design Collaborative (MDC) lessons. Participants take on the characteristics of their math students. Math teachers often think very linearly. Sometimes, focusing so much on getting the answer can result in overlooking how kids learn. This session takes the focus back to teaching and learning. The overview also provides planning time. This way teachers walk out the door with a lesson selected and prepared for their first round of job embedded professional development.

When should we start? Although it is possible to implement this program at any point of the year, Battelle Education recommends starting the training in summer or early fall. Spring and late winter implementations can be slowed due to weather and testing schedules.


How do teachers get in the classroom support?

How do we create buy-in from school administrations?

The two rounds of job embedded professional development typically take place directly on site at a team’s school. During the on-site job embedded professional development, teachers come together after school to prepare their MDC lesson implementation. During the after school session before implementation, teachers analyze student work with the support of their coach.

Throughout the school year, Battelle Education invites school leaders both from the new teams participating in the College Ready programs and from schools who have already been trained on MDC, to a fall and a spring leadership session. Subjects at these meetings vary based on demonstrated needs.

This allows the teacher to: • identify student misconceptions • plan out the execution of the classroom challenge • plan how to react when certain questions or problems arise • group students • create specific feedback questions for students based on the individual student’s needs.

During the next school day (or two), a coach supports teachers in the classroom as they implement their lesson. The coach is there to give the teacher ideas and feedback during implementation. After implementation, the teacher gives students a post-lesson assessment task. This is used to inform teachers as they meet after school to reflect on the lesson. Teachers again analyze student work to see which misconceptions were addressed and which ones they need to go back and spend some additional time developing.


How does College Ready Math help schools meet their math learning goals?

How can one of my teachers become a coach on the MDC tools?

Battelle Education wants to help schools grow and sustain their implementation of the College Ready Math tools. After the job embedded professional development sessions, teams are invited to a summer strategic planning session. The strategic planning sessions are open to both new and experienced teams. It provides an opportunity for schools to collaborate with other schools.

If a teacher leader is interested in additional experiences coaching adult learners on College Ready Math, he or she can apply for a coach-intraining position. Prior to being selected, interested educators must successfully complete the College Ready Math series and demonstrate a strong capacity in implementing the MDC lessons. If a school has plans to train additional teachers in the district, we would encourage you to consider identifying candidates who might be a good fit for this experience.

The goal is to assess your current state, identify where you want to be at the end of next school year, and then create a plan for how to get there. This summer session helps your school team consider things like:

How can we connect and learn from other schools?

• How do we use data to determine what classroom challenges make the most sense to embed in Algebra or in 7th grade math based on our students? • How do we create structures which support teachers in deepening their formative assessment teaching practices? • When should we meet to analyze student work and collect data as a team? • Who will support onboarding new math teachers to use MDC? • Where can we find similar tasks to incorporate onto summative assessments to measure retention?

By opening this strategic planning session to both newly trained teams and teams from previous years, schools can continue to evaluate and assess whether they have met their goals and to re-assess their strategic plans. What’s working? What should be changed?

Battelle Education manages several networks including the STEMx network and the Ohio STEM Learning Network (OSLN). A growing number of schools have participated in the College Ready Math series from across these networks. This provides a great opportunity for teams to see the work in action through setting up school visits with other network schools. Additionally, the teacher coaches leading the College Ready Math series are recruited and selected from the STEM schools across these networks which can provide an ongoing connection between your team and the STEM schools in these networks.

What do educators in the middle of their first year of implementation have to say? When asked, “What observations did you make while implementing (or observing the implementation of) a math classroom challenge,” participants responded: Not only are students learning but the teacher is learning as well; as a teacher, sometimes what you think the students know and what they actually know is totally different.

I realized a lot! One of the biggest observations was that a great deal of understanding can be seen through common misconceptions. Also, I love the ease with which you can differentiate in a lesson such as this.

The way students interact and think when they’re forced to be their own learners is on a much higher level than when they’re in a regular classroom setting.

In a 2014 study using ACT’s PLAN assessment for math, students in classrooms implementing the MDC tools gained (on average) an extra 4.6 months of learning in math. Works Cited: Tools for Teachers, by Teachers: The Literacy Design Collaborative | The Math Design Collaborative. Rep. Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Oct. 2014. Web. 3 Apr. 2015. <>.

WHAT NEXT? Want more information? Reach out to Battelle Education and participate in a call or webinar to learn more about College Ready Math or College Ready Literacy. Are you ready to put together a team? Contact Kelly Gaier Evans at to sign your team up for the series.

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