I know every observer loves to come in and, especially if they don’t know math pedagogy, say that I should try incorporating exit tickets.
I see what they’re saying. It’s probably better for the students than my frantic end of the period shout of, “Don’t forget to copy down your homework! Put your stuff back! BYE!” I think I just don’t believe that they help me as much as my observers seem to believe they do. Of course, there are the occasional surprises still, but not usually worth the time and paper that exit tickets take.
My new exit ticket strategy. I choose one solid problem and have them explain or justify one of their answers. Nothing new. The new part is that I only comment on these and help them improve their terrible explanations. The next day’s exit ticket is to actually rewrite the explanation but this time for an actual grade.
And they do get better!
Each problem is short enough so that it doesn’t take a ridiculously long time to grade the writing that we math teachers dread so much. And for the effort, this is actually worth it to me and I actually wish I can remember to do this more often than I can remember to…
Here is the format that I actually picked up from a CCSS speaker who was saying the same thing about the importance of rough drafts for math arguments (I’ll try to post his name soon =/)…
I just made a bunch of copies and put them in my file so I can make up a problem on the fly if I have to.