I am often humbled by this question as I am not seeking praise for my work, but rather doing my best for my students to earn those HIGH test scores. Yes if you look at my students' data from the past eight years you will see an increasing trend. Two years ago as I was on a cruise in Mexico and found myself sitting next to a superintendent of a very large school district. On the spot he offered me a job because I told him 90% of students passed the state math exam above or on grade level. Data matters. You need to know your student's data and you need to know how to increase it!
Here are three of my favorites to increase your students' data:
#1 Taking Notes
Yields 34% Gain in Learning
Taking notes may sound easy to do, but it does not yield HIGH test scores unless it is done effectively.
This video explains it all better than I can about the effectiveness of taking notes.
Click this video link for an example of how I use note taking in my class.
#2 Finding Errors in Reasoning
Yields 23% Gain in Learning
My students both hate and love this strategy because I use it soooo much. I find that it's the easiest to implement in less an 1 minute. I always give my students the answer and work of a "fake student". I use a fake student because they often can get upset if you pick up someone's work in the classroom and point out their errors. Students pick up on this strategy quickly, which in turn helps them to look at their friend's work for errors and vice versa when working in groups. The more students use this strategy, the more they will think critically and will become better logical thinkers.
Here is an article on how you can implement it in your own classroom.
Or watch the video on how to use this in your classroom.
#3 Identifying similarities and differences
Yields 45% Gain in Learning
My students use lots of Venn Diagrams, foldables, and graphic organizers to show similarities and differences in our Math class.
Here is a helpful handout about how to use this strategy in your classroom.
Please visit my store for more activities with these strategies that I have mentioned: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Kelly-Mccown