To address the mental math and computation skills achievement, we need to have a data set to inform our practice. The most recent data on computation, part A from grade 6 and 9 math Provincial Achievement Tests in 2018, showed low achievement (59% for grade 6, 32% for grade 9 division-wide). Along with this data, during my career, I have observed students struggle with mental math and computation. In my role as Supervisor of Learning Services, teachers across the division have shared their stories which mirror what I have seen in the data.
This tool tests students on basic math skills. This is not testing students on the current curriculum. As educators, we need to go back and check where students foundational math skills and knowledge are so we can get them to achieve at grade level expectations. It is these basic skills and knowledge that hold back students from learning grade-level math outcomes.
TNT will be done on the computer. There is no marking for teachers. When the students are done the tests, teachers can view the results immediately. The test will show class and student results with bar and circle graphs. Teachers then can reteach these skills so students can reach mastery which in turn helps them learn grade-level content. A second test will be scheduled in March to check on individual growth. A sample test will be sent to teachers before the administration of the actual tests. The sample test needs to be done so students and teachers can work our any technical and logistical issues.
Grades 3 to 9 are being tested. The math topics being tested are representing numbers (place value), and number operations. In addition to these tests, the junior students will be doing rates, percents and ratios, and integer tests. The questions on the tests are strategically chosen and follow a progression on how students learn these concepts. Instructions on which tests your students should do will be sent out soon.