How do you cover an entire range of grade-level content when you have limited time? Eureka Math2® provides a great foundation for doing this with its intentionally selected and sequenced content crafted to fit within a school year. Still, you must be strategic with your time. Begin with a pacing plan for the year. Then, after creating that year-long plan, you’ll need to make the day-to-day decisions that will help you stay on pace.
Make choices to keep lessons within one math period.
It is tempting to dig deep into all discussion prompts, to incorporate every scaffold or idea for extension, and to leave no problem unsolved. But this is unnecessary. As a teacher, you make the expert call on what your students need. You should include each component of the lesson (Fluency, Launch, Learn, Land), but which activities you use within each of these components are up to you. Let’s look at some decision points for each component.
- Fluency: Which Fluency activities will you prioritize? Which can be omitted or delayed until another time?
- Launch: Keep track of time. These rich tasks could easily engage students for much longer than the allotted time. Consider what you want to highlight and remember that the learning will continue throughout the rest of the lesson.
- Learn: Which problems and activities do your students need from Learn? Keep in mind that Eureka Math2 Problem Sets are sequenced from simple to complex. As the teacher, you decide how many and which problems your students work on along that continuum. Remember, students should be working independently, and not all problems need to be reviewed with your whole class. It’s also okay for students to engage for a set time and then move on. You’ll still be able to see what they know and can do.
- Land: Be intentional. Choose questions that will help students synthesize the learning and that also help you assess what they know. You don’t have to use every question.
Keep going and trust that proficiency will happen over time.
It takes time to build new skills and deeply understand ideas. Eureka Math2 is a thoughtfully layered curriculum, which means students have the opportunity to engage repeatedly with connected content as their understanding strengthens and grows. This also means you don’t need to stop and reteach just because some students are not proficient by the end of a lesson. You can allow them the grace and space to grow as lessons progress. Let their proficiency develop over time.
In addition to the layered nature of the curriculum, there are also embedded additional opportunities for students to practice and build proficiency over time. One of these opportunities is working on the Remember problems in the Practice portion of the lesson materials. Another is the inclusion of Fluency activities, which are intended to provide additional practice.
Remember, these day-to-day decisions about how you spend your time add up to a year’s worth of instruction. These tips will help make sure it’s a full year’s worth of content too.
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Jessica Bulgarelli is an implementation leader for Eureka Math at Great Minds®. Previously, she was a middle school math teacher and instructional leader in Baltimore City, Maryland.