Maths Target Setting
A recent debate I had with my colleagues is whether or not you can expect people to mark children’s work in Maths the same way you expect them to mark English work. Can you expect the same types of comment or style of marking? I’d say Maths is a unique beast, one that cannot be compared to English, Science or Humanities. Therefore you cannot expect the same types of feedback in all sets of books.
Let me know what you think about that. Anyway, you certainly can’t set targets in the same manner in Maths as you can in English. You will always need full stops in English, but you might only come across a tetrahedron a couple of times a year in Maths. Day to day, or week to week you cover such completely diverse topics in Maths with sometimes almost no crossover in skills.
So how do you target set in Maths when they have such a limited window of opportunity to reach any such target?
The answer I’ve come up with is two-fold:
1. Give each child a set of ‘I can’ statements which you expect them to achieve by the end of the year. These need to cover all areas of the Maths curriculum and be tied into each child’s end of year target. I have made such a resource, but was made before levels disappeared. So you can take the ideas, but perhaps take out the sub-levels. See an example below (click the image to see it in more detail).
2. Secondly you can use a traffic light system of daily target setting and get the children to record their target and then self assess themselves in relation to their target. Below is an example of the traffic light system, which can be used on an IWB, plus an example of the target setting/self assessment sheet.
The targets you use on the traffic light system are clearly differentiated. You can set three levels of targets for each lesson and either ask the children to choose their target, or direct groups or individuals towards specific targets. The types of differentiated targets you use can come directly from the ‘I can’ statement sheets. They can then tick off the statement on their sheet when they achieve it. Simple!
Here an example of this very simple Maths target setting system and it in use:
Have a go at this way of target setting for Maths. I can promise you it works and it is the least time consuming system. You’ll love it, honest!
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