As a child, I always HATED math. I thought I was just not good at it. I remember the anxiety leading up to nearly every math test. I was so worried my teacher and my parents would finally know how clueless I was. They would chastise me for not asking for help sooner. The reality is this level of pressure and stress should not be on our students. Our job as teachers is to continually assess, modify, and intervene if we have students struggling in any area. In this blog post, I share a few tips on how to use math exit tickets to help your students succeed and feel more confident.
Exit tickets are a great way to provide consistent checks for student understanding. Exit tickets are quick ways to check student understanding of a previously taught concept. Typically, teachers use exit tickets at the end of a lesson.
Benefits of Using Math Exit Tickets
- Exit tickets give teachers a quick snapshot of their class’s understanding of a new topic. You can use the data from exit tickets to form small groups, enrichment, and provide intervention for students who need support.
- Exit tickets also provide students a way to self-assess as they are progressing on a skill.
- Exit tickets hold students accountable for their learning.
How to Use Exit Tickets to Inform Instruction
I like to use exit tickets throughout the unit to monitor student understanding of each skill. To use them at the end of a lesson, give each student an exit ticket and allow him or her to read and answer the corresponding questions independently. These should not necessarily be for a grade. Collect the exit tickets, assess, and use the data to determine if your students need reteaching, more practice, or have mastered the skill. I would form my small groups for the next day, partially based on the data I received from exit tickets.
I created my math exit tickets with four tickets for each skill. Each subsequent exit ticket is more challenging. Use the exit tickets in order as you progress through teaching each standard. You can also differentiate by using the exit tickets based on each student’s level of understanding.
More Ways to Use Exit Tickets
If you have a more advanced student or class, you can use the exit ticket as a pre-assessment. Using them this way will help you determine if students need explicit instruction in a particular skill or are ready to move on. If only a few students need explicit instruction, you can teach/reteach in small groups.
I created my math exit tickets with a section for students to quickly self-reflect on their confidence level for each skill. For primary grades, students color a face to show their confidence level and perceived understanding of a skill. For upper elementary, students circle a statement explaining their confidence levels.
Finding The Right Exit Ticket Resources
When looking to implement math exit tickets, finding the right resource can be half the battle. My grade-specific exit tickets have four tickets for each skill that increase in difficulty, so you can be confident you’re getting effective feedback. If you’re interested in using my exit tickets in your classroom, you can find them using the links below!