|The Teachers' Lounge|
A student can earn MathDice points by playing any of the different MathDice games. These include the following:
There are two schools of thought among teachers for how points should be tracked: some teachers believe that this is a teacher responsibility, and others believe that it is a student responsibility.
In our experience, either way works. If it is important to you to check your studentsí work, by all means you should ask your students to hand in their worksheets and monitor their point scores. This is an excellent way to integrate MathDice in with your main curriculum.
Alternatively, if you view MathDice as a fun game that happens to do a great job reinforcing math skills, you can have your students track their own points. We have designed a system for doing this, which is included in each studentís Main Season Mathdice Program. You as the teacher will need to provide guidance for where to post the classroom materials and help with basic administration, but your students can do most of the work themselves.Administering the Point Tracking System
There are three elements to the MathDice Point Tracking system, as follows:
Each student should receive their own MathDice Player Scoresheet, which they will use to keep track of their personal progress. This will either come to them as part of their MathDice Main Season Program, or you will need to make copies for them. Whenever a student plays a MathDice game or solves a MathDice challenge, they should note the number of MathDice points they have earned from this activity, and mark off these points on their score sheet. When using the Ice Cream score sheets, each scoop equals one point.Team Score Sheet
The Team Score Sheet is the mechanism to connect each studentís personal progress into the overall class performance. Each time a student reaches 10 points on his Personal Score Sheet, he/she writes his/her name or initials in the next available box on this poster. The rows of this scoresheet are calibrated so that each row signifies 100 total MathDice points.Giant Ice Cream Poster
When a full row of the Team Scoresheet has been filled up, itís giant ice cream poster time! Every time the class gets 100 points, they get to color in the appropriate scoop however they see fit. Some students have even gone as far as using glitter! Encourage them to have fun with this.
With this method thereís absolutely no tabulation required by the teacher. The entire system is self-scoring and self-tallying!A Word on Point Totals
We have developed an Ice Cream Cone poster with 15 scoops of ice cream, signifying 1500 collective MathDice points. This is just an example to test out how the system could work; our first test schools averaged about 30 students per class, and we planned that the program would work well if we expected an average of 50 points per student. This has worked well, though we have since had feedback that some Gifted/Talented programs expect to strive for more points, and some classes where teachers could devote less time to the program preferred lower totals.Honor System
The MathDice program is a flexible system, students may earn points in a variety of different ways. Because there is a great deal of independence, there may be the temptation to add points that have not been fully earned.
Weíve found that the best way to handle this is to start the program by getting a commitment from your students to play according to the Honor System. The MathDice honor system is simple and straightforward: all you have to do is ask your students to pledge that they will play MathDice fairly, and not cheat either during play or in reporting their point totals. Emphasize to them that MathDice is a game, and they should treat it like any other game that they would play at home, recognizing that itís a lot more fun when they play fair and honestly.