## Monday, August 29, 2011

### Excel Math: The Words

My last blog posting gave you some numbers about our Excel Math elementary math curriculum. As the second in a short "school is starting" series, let's look at words we use to describe the features of our curriculum:

Lesson Sheet Consumable legal-size pages for students with content for them to interact with. We print so many million pages that the cost to customers is less than 3 cents per page image (5.4¢ per 2-sided sheet). Boxed in sets of 10, 15, 22 30 or 35 lessons, or available in tear-off pads for one student.

NOTE: It is a violation of copyright law for schools to buy one set and duplicate the pages, and it's more expensive. We've done the math!

Teacher Edition Approximately 500 pages of material created to introduce and support the concepts taught on the Lesson Sheets; includes an answer key. Available in coil-bound print version and in electronic form on our Projectable CD-ROM.

Lesson An objective like "Students will multiply and divide mixed numbers" and a plan for helping them explore this concept, with examples and a few problems. Located on the Upper Front Left of the Lesson Sheet. Also available as part of our Projectable product on CD-ROM.

Basic Fact Practice Set of problems utilizing the four basic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) for student practice. Located on the Lower Front Left of the Lesson Sheet.

Homework Set of problems to be done at home to reinforce concepts learned in lessons 1-2 weeks prior to the homework. Located on the Right Front of the Lesson Sheet.

Guided Practice Spiraled set of problems that review & enhance understanding of previously-taught objectives. Located on the Back of the Lesson Sheet.

Regular Tests Set of questions to review concepts taught 1-4 weeks ago; Quarterly Tests Set of questions to review concepts from the past 35-40 lessons; Year-End Tests A pair of tests totaling 100 questions to review the entire year's concepts.

Create A Problem Complex story problems to encourage higher-level thinking; throughout grades 2-6. Located on the back of test pages.

Stretch Questions Brain-teaser questions and puzzles to introduce or review concepts; not directly related to the day's work. Located in grades 2-6 Teacher Editions.

Exercises Puzzles, mazes and active learning strategies for Kindergarten and First grade. Located on the back of tests or every 5th day.

Activities Suggestions for active learning versus lecture; daily in place of Stretches in 1st grade; 12-14 per grade in Grades 2-6. Located at the back of each Teacher Edition.

Manipulatives Artwork for teachers to duplicate and distribute to support learning activities - such as number charts, timelines, regrouping boards, etc. Located in the Teacher Edition after Activities.

Glossary List of words / objectives taught in one grade, with definitions and illustrations. Located in the Teacher Edition. All-grade glossaries in English and Spanish are located on our website and can be freely downloaded.

Scope and Sequence Listing of the objectives covered by each lesson, in both subject and consecutive order. Located in the front of the Teacher Edition.

Score Distribution Chart A set of blank chart where teachers can record, compare and present student test results without disclosing student names. Located in the front of the Teacher Edition.

CheckAnswer  A trademarked term, employed only by Excel Math. It's a number that students use to confirm they did a set of problems correctly. Used in grades 2-6 only in Homework and Guided Practice sections of the Lesson Sheet.

This image shows 3 problems students are asked to solve, the sum of the answers (a 4th problem), and the confirming CheckAnswer in box A.

The next blog post will contain some more visual examples of Excel Math, and far fewer words!