Book Study: The Formative 5 - Math Coach's Corner

“Fennell, Kobett, and Wray make a strong case that when instruction is optimal, the concepts of planning, instruction, and formative assessment become virtually indistinguishable–they all become components of one seamless process delivering powerful instruction that positively impacts student learning.” Matt Larson, PhD in the Foreword to the Formative 5

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I’m just back from the NCTM Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, DC, and I feel absolutely rejuvenated! So many powerful educators and thought-provoking sessions. It was just what I needed to land on a book to use for Book Study Monday this summer. This summer we’ll be studying The Formative 5: Everyday Assessment Techniques for Every Math Classroom by Skip Fennell, Beth Kobett, and Jonathan Wray. I had the opportunity to hear Jon Wray speak about the book not once, but twice, and I was impressed with both the message of the book and the user-friendly format. Ongoing, balanced assessment is key with a Math Workshop approach to instruction, and this book fills a big void by presenting a palette of impactful formative assessment techniques. If you’ve ever wondered, “How will I know if they have it?” (and who hasn’t), this is the book for you.

This is an important topic, so I hope you’ll join me for this online book study.


Pick up the book and dive in! We’ll follow the reading schedule outlined below. On the six Mondays listed on the reading schedule, I’ll post my thoughts from the reading and update the reading schedule below with links to each post. Join in the conversation by adding your comments. Be sure to check out the prereading questions in the book’s appendix. I’m also going a little more high tech this time by including a slow Twitter chat. Once the book study starts, I will post questions throughout the week using the hashtag #Formative5. Participating is easy! Search on the hashtag anytime during the week to follow the conversation. Add your thoughts using the same hashtag. You can even check out the hashtag now and get an idea of what people are saying about the book. If you haven’t used Twitter for professional development, this is a great way to start.

Reading schedule

Get ready for a great learning experience!

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