Whether it is teaching or coaching mathematics, students should receive prompt feedback on the performances. Teacher feedback provides students with information that can be helpful to them in making the necessary changes to improve their performances. Students are always seeking guidance from their teachers and coaches to make adjustments to their plans for success.
In the classroom, feedback can be done immediately after a question gets asked. If a student has any misconceptions on a concept being taught, a teacher has an opportunity to clear it up. Teachers can do this by presenting additional problems or by using alternative means of explanation. Feedback can also be provided through homework or assessments that have been graded. Teachers can study homework and assessments to determine individual and class weaknesses. After grading students’ work, I made sure to address concerns based on errors that I saw. At the beginning of a class period I discussed problems that were missed the most. If I had time, I would then focus on individual students that I felt needed the most help. These students were then given an opportunity for individualized tutoring. There were other times where students were given an opportunity to ask specific questions about there individual concerns.
During mathematics practices, I usually would give students an opportunity to ask questions about any tests that they were taking ( in Number Sense, Calculator Applications or Mathematics). On numerous occasions I would develop special handouts that focused on problems that were missed the most. After team members had participated at a mathematics tournament, I studied their tests to determine individual and team weaknesses. During the following team practice, I discussed the problems that were missed the most. I also allowed students to ask individual questions.
Whether teaching or coaching, improving my students’ performances was an integral part of every lesson. I knew that if my students got feedback on their performances, they could make the necessary adjustments to master the concepts that I wanted them to learn. Once those concepts were mastered, their performances improved.