skip to main content

Main Page Image


You have the ability to develop mathematically proficient  students, students who can solve problems and also communicate their understanding to others.  Research and experience has proven that when students are engaged in a balance of mathematics activities, they can succeed when it counts-in applying their math skills and reasoning ability to solve real-life problems requiring mathematical solutions.  Continue down the page to find guidance related to high impact instructional practices that support rigorous and appropriate mathematics instruction.  


Below is an example of a Balanced Math Framework for K-5 Classrooms.  Please note that the time allocation is a suggestion and not minimum number of required minutes.  The most important part of a balanced framework is to provide students with each component of the framework on a daily basis.  


Daily Math Framework

Math Review (10 minutes)

Skill review:

·         Share 3-5 problems a day with students

·         Students solve problems in their notebooks or math journals.

·         Five minutes of work time and five minutes to correct.

·         Correct together and have students share the various ways they solved the problem.

Mental Math (5 minutes) or Fact Fluency (10-15 minutes)

Works to develop students’ mental mathematical abilities:

·         Read a number problem aloud for students (should be developmentally appropriate).

·         Students solve mentally.

·         Students should give the correct answer (or show on a white board) for a quick check.

Build math fact automaticity:

·         Have students work at their independent level practicing math facts.

Concept Lesson (30-40 minutes)

Instructional Approach = Construct Knowledge or Explicit Modeling

Helps students develop a clear conceptual understanding of mathematics:

·         Problem-based interactive learning should be the foundation in teaching for understanding.

·         Provide the focus of the lesson by sharing the purpose of the lesson.

·         Use multiple methods and strategies.

·         Incorporate concrete models that support the understanding of mathematical concepts.

·         Provide a variety of instructional opportunities from whole class to partners and small group activities.

·         Make connections to aid students in the application of the mathematical knowledge.

·         Provide opportunities for students to discover concepts using hands-on or problem –based learning activities.

Closure (5-10 minutes)

Provides a way to check student understanding:

·         Provide time for students to share prior knowledge, reflect on new learning, and make connections.

·         Students articulate their thinking (this can be done verbally or in writing, including pictures and words).

·         Use formative assessment as a post-assessment or performance task to check for understanding.

Small group, centers, assessments or problem-based activities (20-30 minutes)

Allows for students to be given time to receive additional instruction, remediation or enrichment opportunities:

·         Place students in differentiated instruction groups (based on assessment information gathered throughout the week).

·         Students in need of remediation should be grouped together and receive direct, explicit instruction from teacher.

Helps students learn how to mathematically communicate how to solve authentic complex problems:

·         Provide developmentally appropriate activities.

·         Make intentional connections to the concepts being taught.

·         Make sure the students understand the expectations of the activity.

·         Emphasize how the problem was solved, what strategies were used, and how the answer will be shared.


Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks

1.  The problem has important useful mathematics embedded in it.

2.  The problem requires higher-level thinking and problem solving in it.

3.  The problem contributes to the conceptual development of students.

4.  The problem creates an opportunity for the teacher to assess what his/her students are learning and where they are experiencing difficulty.

5.  The problem can be approached by students in multiple ways using different solution strategies.

6.  The problem has various solutions or allows differnt decisions or positions to be taken or defended.

7.  The problem encourages student engagment and discourse.

8.  The problem connects to other important mathematical ideas.

9.  The problem promotes the skillful use of mathematics.

10.  The problem provides an opportunity to practice important skills.  



Gradual Release Model of Instruction

1.  Students observe a teacher model the task to be performed.  This allows the students an opportunity to develop an understanding of the process/content through access to the teacher's thoughts as he/she performs the task.  Teacher Think Aloud.  

2.  Students particpate in Guided Practice oppourtunities as  whole group.  The teacher leads the group through the same process with a new example.  The teacher allows the students to make mistakes and use those mistakes to formatively assess other students and provide them an opportunity to construct viable aruguments and justify them.

3.  Students engage in cooperative practice opportunities.  If the students struggle in the cooperative setting, it might be useful to repeat the teacher model and/or guided practice phase.

4.  Students engage in independent practice opportunity.  Students are presented with another new example and are required to demonstrate individual understanding of the process/content.  

Murray County Schools
P. O. Box 40
1006 Green Road
Chatsworth, GA 30705
Copyright © 2022 Murray County Schools Elementary Curriculum Resource