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Assessment approaches

Assessment can guide and encourage specific approaches to mathematics learning. Some assessment approaches particularly foster valuable classroom habits related to reasoning.

Observation of reasoning strategies is an excellent way to discover students' understanding in an informal way. When students write about reasoning, teachers are encouraged to make careful analyses of their thought processes and logic. The use of open questions and problem-posing expands the types of responses.

Using open tasks

Open tasks allow a range of different responses.


Reasoning is best assessed formatively through observation of everyday classroom work and interactions.

Students' writing

Students' writing and drawing about their mathematical thinking add interest to a classroom display.

Using problem-posing

Students' problem-posing encourages them to create and reason about problems of their own interest.