This week is a good week for students to do a self-evaluation of their progress so far. Have students evaluate their participation in their teams, their use of team roles, their commitment to completing and understanding the homework, and/or their overall level of understanding of the math concepts studied so far.
You may want to lead your students in creating a class list of things to try when they are stuck on a problem. Display the list they create on a chart or bulletin board where it will remind them that they can, for example: ask each other, look in the book for a similar problem, re-read the problem, look at the Math Notes boxes, reread the focus questions, ask the teacher, or move on to the next problem in order to jog a memory or make a possible connection. You might also want to use an I Spy for stuck teams.
When assessing for understanding, remember that mastery takes time. For this reason, approximately 2/3 of the items on a test should be on topics from previous chapters and approximately 1/3 of the items should be on newer developing concepts. Team assessments should include only a few challenging problems with a focus on problems that require students to work together. Much more information on creating and grading assessments can be found in the assessment handbook in the front of teacher’s edition, in the assessment guides at the beginning of each chapter, and at the assessment website.
Note that team assessments need not be graded. Instead, focus your review of student work on the strengths they show—in both mathematics and solution strategies—and point out areas where they need additional work, including suggestions about what to do.