Superintendent’s Memo #334-12

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

December 14, 2012

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Resources for Implementation of the 2009 Mathematics Standards of Learning

The following is an annotated listing of curriculum, instruction, and assessment resources and guidance provided to school divisions since 2009 to assist with the implementation of the 2009 Mathematics Standards of Learning

Standards of Learning and Curriculum Framework Documents
In February 2009, the Board of Education approved the 2009 Mathematics Standards of Learning (SOL) and they were subsequently posted on the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) Web site with their supporting Curriculum Framework documents.  The Curriculum Framework, approved in October 2009, provides guidance for instruction and assessment of the 2009 Mathematics SOL.  The Mathematics Crosswalk between the 2009 and 2001 Standards provides detail on additions, deletions, and changes included in the 2009 Mathematics SOL.

SOL Testing Blueprints
Posted SOL testing blueprints indicate the reporting categories for each SOL test, the SOL assessed in each reporting category, the number of test items for each reporting category and for the test as a whole, and the number of field test items for the test. 

Professional Development Resources
Over the past four years, the VDOE has held statewide K-12 Mathematics SOL Institutes that provided targeted professional development for school divisions in support of the implementation of the 2009 Mathematics SOL. Professional development resources from each Institute are posted online to facilitate ongoing professional development in school divisions.  The 2012 Mathematics SOL Institutes provided a set of posted online professional development modules for grade level or subject area teams of teachers focusing on the use of mathematics formative assessments to drive instructional decisions.

Mathematics Vocabulary Word Wall Cards for Grades K-8
Mathematics vocabulary word wall cards provide a display of mathematics content words and associated visual cues to assist in vocabulary development. The cards should be used as an instructional tool for teachers and then as a reference for all students, particularly English learners and students with disabilities.

Instructional Videos for Teachers
Instructional videos provided assist teachers in addressing areas of instructional challenge for mathematics content in kindergarten through grade 8. 

Enhanced Scope and Sequence (ESS) Sample Lesson Plans
Mathematics ESS Sample Lesson Plans help teachers align instruction with the 2009 Mathematics SOL by providing examples of how the knowledge and skills found in the SOL and Curriculum Framework can be presented to students in the classroom. The lesson plans are accessible using a keyword search, or by selecting specific SOL objectives organized by grade level and reporting category.  Sample lesson plans are provided for grades K through 8; Algebra I; Geometry; Algebra, Functions, and Data Analysis; and Algebra II.

Technical Assistance Documents
Technical assistance documents provide clarification on or instructional assistance with mathematics content.  Some of the content may not be included in mathematics textbooks previously adopted by school divisions.  Technical assistance documents posted include a listing of the algebraic properties in grades 3 through Algebra II and two documents focused on new statistics content found in Algebra I and Algebra II.

SOL Practice Items and TestNav Tools Practice
To support student preparation for test questions that assess the 2009 Mathematics SOL, a set of practice items delivered via TestNav™, the online testing software used in Virginia, was developed and posted on the VDOE Web site for each SOL mathematics test.  SOL practice items provide students an opportunity to become familiar with new types of items that reflect the increased rigor and new content found in the 2009 Mathematics SOL.  SOL practice items contain technology-enhanced items (TEI) that require students to demonstrate their learning in ways other than a multiple choice format.

An SOL Practice Item Guide, which may be used by teachers or other adults to guide students through the practice items, was developed for each SOL practice item set.  The use of the guide is strongly encouraged, as it will help ensure that students are familiar with the types of items that they may encounter while taking the mathematics tests.  The directions in the guide will also lead students through practice with the online tools, and will familiarize them with how to navigate through the test, and how to use the Section Review screen within TestNav™.

Please note that the practice items are not intended to be a complete test and are not intended to cover all content for the grade level or course.  Furthermore, while the practice items provide examples of some TEI, they are not intended to represent all types of functionality associated with these item types.

To further assist in familiarizing students with the tools available within TestNav, the online testing software used in Virginia, two sets of TestNav Tools Practice have been made available.  One is geared toward students in grades 3 through 8 mathematics, while the other is geared towards students taking Algebra I, Geometry, or Algebra II.  The TestNav Tools Practice sets will provide students opportunities to practice using the online tools such as the ruler, straightedge, protractor, and compass.

Ancillary Test Materials: Formula Sheets and the Table of Standard Normal Probabilities
Formula sheets for mathematics tests in grades 6 through 8, Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II were developed for use on the new tests.  Algebra II (SOL AII.11) requires students to analyze properties of normal distributions and apply those properties to determine probabilities associated with areas under the standard normal curve. The table of Standard Normal Probabilities (z-table) is provided for use with this SOL. 

Approved Calculators
The listing of state‐approved calculators for mathematics and science SOL assessments includes instructions for resetting graphing calculators prior to SOL testing.

Approved Textbooks
The VDOE posted the list of textbooks for K-12 mathematics that was approved by the Board of Education in July 2011.  Included are SOL correlations for each approved textbook to assist school divisions in the local textbook adoption process.

Questions regarding instructional resources should be directed to Michael Bolling, acting director, Office of Mathematics and Governor’s Schools, via e-mail at Michael.Bolling@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 786-6418; Deborah Wickham, mathematics specialist K-5, via e-mail at Deborah.Wickham@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 786-7986; or Christa Southall, mathematics specialist, via e-mail at Christa.Southall@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-2016.  Questions regarding assessment resources should be directed to assessment staff via e-mail at Student_Assessment@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-2102.

PIW/MB