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Supporting Struggling Learners in Mathematics

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Supporting Struggling Learners in Mathematics

HB23-1231 legislation empowers the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) in supporting students struggling in math, but also underscores the significance of pinpointing the source of a student's challenges. Identifying the root causes of each student's unique challenges allows for customized intervention strategies to be implemented with precision at the school district, school and/or classroom level.  This targeted, nuanced approached to enhancing student outcomes in math creates a foundation for academic success and proficiency for Coloradan students, PK-12.

Online Tools and Resources:

The following list presents diverse tools and resources for educators' consideration. The CDE strongly advises school districts to conduct thorough reviews of these resources to guarantee alignment with local guidelines for instructional materials. Customizing interventions in accordance with district needs and standards ensures an effective and tailored support system for struggling learners.

  • National Center on Intensive Intervention American Institutes for Research (AIR) includes information and ratings on the technical rigor of a study's (a) quality of design and results, (b) quality of other indicators, (c) intensity and (d) additional research. Specifically, the Academic Intervention Tools Chart can be filtered to show just those intervention tools that relate to mathematics with the most convincing evidence of their effectiveness.
  • Evidence-Based Intervention Network (EBI Network), categorizes math interventions as (a) acquisition (the task is too hard for the student), (b) proficiency (the student needs fluency), (c) generalization (the student has not done the task that way before) and motivation (the student does not want to do the task). Within each category, interventions are listed with full intervention briefs describing the function of the intervention, the setting, alignment to standards domains, procedures, critical assumptions, materials and supporting research.
  • What Works Clearinghouse (WWC), an initiative by the U.S. Department of Education, evaluates and summarizes research on education programs, practices and policies with a goal to provide educators, policymakers. WCC assesses the effectiveness of various interventions, ranging from instructional strategies to educational programs, and disseminates this information through reviews and reports.
  • The Colorado English Language Proficiency Standards provides Colorado educators with resources to develop mathematical language in all students. The 'Can Do' descriptors are a particularly helpful entry point to the standards.
  • Open access mathematics materials for emerging bilingual learners of English, released by Understanding Language, were developed using research-based principles for designing mathematics instructional materials and tasks from two publicly accessible curriculum projects, Inside Mathematics and the Mathematics Assessment Project. Each lesson supports students in learning to communicate about a mathematical problem they have solved, to read and understand word problems or to incorporate mathematical vocabulary in a problem-solving activity.



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