Mar 27

CCSSM and PARCC: Finding the Quality Mathematics (there’s plenty)

This posting provides links to various for this presentation made at the Annual ISMAA Meeting in Dekalb, IL on 3/27/2015. My abstract is here.



The PARCC test has met much criticism (from parents, teachers, whiners, and policy makers) as an assessment tool and a way to measure student mathematical understanding.  The PARCC set too high of goals for themselves, and, as an assessment, it has an uncertain future.  This session is not about the Pros and Cons of the PARCC, as an assessment.

We want to use the sample items, and CCSSM itself, to provide ideas for classroom tasks – for student learning.

Overall Comments

  • The Mathematical Practices of CCSSM are helpful. pg 6 of CCSSM I like to emphasize practice 2 (Reason abstractly and quantitatively-the decontextualize and contextualize  language is great) and 4 (Model with mathematics)
  • The tables on pages 88 and 89 need to be emphasized. On page 89 the 3 key meanings of multiplication (column 1) are huge.  The two key meanings of division (top row right two cells) are huge.
  • The idea (stated in the notes near the back of CCSSM) that many of the key ideas for college and career readiness are from grades 6-8 (proportional reasoning and percents) is very good.
  • The HS Algebra II PARCC test is very functions and modeling based – as it should be.
  • Mental math is important (again!) – We finally have a two-part math test; with and without a calculator.
  • Teachers are saying good things about CCSSM – see http://www.cincinnati.com/story/opinion/contributors/2015/02/22/common-core-transforms-math-learning/23857441/

PARCC Sample tests

See http://parcc.pearson.com/practice-tests/math/ Click the bars at the bottom to get them to open up. There are PBA and EOY tests.  There are online and print versions.

  • Start with Algebra II – PBA-print version
    • See #8, 11, 14
    • See #18 – Compost Problem wow! Great problem with lots of rates!
  • Algebra II – EOY-print version
    • #1 – wow!
    • #2 “Select all that apply.”
    • #4 – two parts
    • #6 – two parts
    • #7 – The need to apply skills and combine skills.
    • #11 – average rate of change!
    • #18 – formulas and graphs – Select all that apply
    • #20 – average rate of change from a graph!
    • Lots of statistics #24 1.5 standard deviations of the mean; #33
    • #27 – note the questions
    • Probability #28

From Bob Mann

parcc-sample-Test-ProblemsforJim – Word document

Spotting Numbers and Visual Patterns

See this posting on “Spotting Numbers and Visual Patterns” –  I think it is very rich mathematically