Alignment: Overall Summary

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for Alignment to the CCSSM. In Gateway 1, the materials meet expectations for focus and coherence, and in Gateway 2, the materials meet expectations for rigor and practice-content connections.

Alignment

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Meets Expectations

Gateway 1:

Focus & Coherence

0
7
12
14
14
12-14
Meets Expectations
8-11
Partially Meets Expectations
0-7
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway 2:

Rigor & Mathematical Practices

0
10
16
18
18
16-18
Meets Expectations
11-15
Partially Meets Expectations
0-10
Does Not Meet Expectations

Usability

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Partially Meets Expectations

Not Rated

Gateway 3:

Usability

0
17
24
27
23
24-27
Meets Expectations
18-23
Partially Meets Expectations
0-17
Does Not Meet Expectations

Gateway One

Focus & Coherence

Meets Expectations

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Gateway One Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for focus and coherence. For focus, the materials assess grade-level content and provide all students extensive work with grade-level problems to meet the full intent of grade-level standards. For coherence, each grade’s materials are coherent and consistent with the CCSSM.

Criterion 1a - 1b

Materials assess grade-level content and give all students extensive work with grade-level problems to meet the full intent of grade-level standards.

6/6
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for focus as they assess grade-level content and provide all students extensive work with grade-level problems to meet the full intent of grade-level standards.

Indicator 1a

Materials assess the grade-level content and, if applicable, content from earlier grades.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for assessing grade-level content and, if applicable, content from earlier grades. The curriculum is divided into eight units and each unit contains a Pre-Unit Assessment, Mid-Unit Assessment, and Post-Unit Assessment. Pre-Unit assessments may be used “before the start of a unit, either as part of class or for homework.” Mid-Unit assessments are “designed to assess students on content covered in approximately the first half of the unit” and may also be used as homework. Post-Unit assessments “are designed to assess students’ full range of understanding of content covered throughout the whole unit.” Examples of Post-Unit Assessments include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 3 states, “Steph has 40 rubber bands. She has 5 times as many rubber bands as Jake has. Which equation shows how to find the number of rubber bands Jake has?  A. 40 + 5 = 45; B. 40 - 5 = 35; C. 40 × 5 = 200; D. 40 ÷ 5 = 8.” (4.OA.1)

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 4 states, “In one year, Janie sent 4,368 text messages. Janie sent 4 times as many text messages as Tanner. How many text messages did Tanner send?” (4.NBT.6, 4.OA.2)

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 3 states, “Find each sum or difference. a. 6\frac{4}{6}+7\frac{3}{6} b. 5\frac{2}{5}-1\frac{3}{5}.” (4.NF.3c)

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 1 states, “Which of these is equivalent to \frac{38}{100}? A. 0.038; B. 0.38; C. 38.0; D. 380.” (4.NF.6)

Indicator 1b

Materials give all students extensive work with grade-level problems to meet the full intent of grade-level standards.

4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for giving all students extensive work with grade-level problems to meet the full intent of grade-level standards. The instructional materials provide extensive work in Grade 4 by providing Anchor Tasks, Problem Sets, Homework, and Target Tasks for each lesson. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 19, Target Task engages students in extensive work in 4.OA.3 (solve multistep word problems posed with whole numbers and having whole-number answers using the four operations, including problems in which remainders must be interpreted. Represent these problems using equations with a letter standing for the unknown quantity. Assess the reasonableness of answers using mental computation and estimation strategies including rounding). It states, “In one year a factory used 11650 meters of cotton, 4,950 fewer meters of silk than cotton, and 3,500 more meters of wool than silk. 1. How many meters in all were used in the three fabrics? Show or explain your work. 2. Assess the reasonableness of your answer.” 

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 14, Problem Set, Problem 2 engages students in extensive work in 4.NBT.5 (multiply a whole number of up to four digits by a one-digit whole number, and multiply two-digit numbers, using strategies based on place value and the properties of operations. Illustrate and explain the calculation by using equations, rectangular arrays, and/or area models). It states, “2. Use the same method as Felicia to complete an area model and an equation to solve each of the following multiplication problems. a. 14 × 22 b. 25 × 32.” 

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 12, Homework, Problems 1-3 engage students in extensive work in 4.NF.3c (add and subtract mixed numbers with like denominators, e.g., by replacing each mixed number with an equivalent fraction, and/or by using properties of operations and the relationship between addition and subtraction). It states, “1. Solve. Show or explain your work. a. 4\frac{1}{3}+\frac{1}{3} b. 4\frac{1}{4}+\frac{2}{4} c. \frac{2}{6}+3\frac{4}{6} d. \frac{5}{8}+7\frac{3}{8} 2. Find the sum in two ways. 5\frac{7}{10}+\frac{4}{10}; 3. Georgia was solving #2, and wrote 5\frac{11}{10} as her answer. How would you suggest Georgia change the way she has recorded her answer? Why is it helpful to record answers that way?” 

The instructional materials provide opportunities for all students to engage with the full intent of Grade 4 standards through a consistent lesson structure, including Anchor Tasks, Problems Sets, Homework Problems, and Target Tasks. Anchor Problems include a connection to prior knowledge, multiple entry points to new learning, and guided instruction support. Problem Set Problems engage all students in practice that connects to the objective of each lesson. Target Task Problems can be used as formative assessment. Each unit is further divided into topics. The lessons within each topic build on each other, meeting the full intent of the standards. Examples of where the materials meet the full intent include:

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 9 provides an opportunity for students to engage with the full intent of standard 4.NBT.6 (find whole-number quotients and remainders with up to four-digit dividends and one-digit divisors, using strategies based on place value, the properties of operations, and/or the relationship between multiplication and division. Illustrate and explain the calculation by using equations, rectangular arrays, and/or area models).  Target Task, Problem 2 is written and solved using the standard algorithm. It states, “Here is a calculation of 8,472 ÷ 5. a. There’s a 5 under the 8 in the 8,472. What does this 5 represent? b. What does the subtraction of 5 from 8 mean? c. Why is a 4 written next to the 3 from 8-5?” Problem set, Problem 2 states, “Write a division problem whose quotient is 314 R 7. Explain how you came up with it.”  Homework, Problem 4 states, “Tamieka is making bracelets. She has 3,467 beads. It takes 8 beads to make each bracelet. How many bracelets can she make? How many more beads would she need to be able to make another bracelet?” 

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Topic C: Comparing and Ordering Fractions,  Lessons 11-15, provides an opportunity for students to engage with the full intent of 4.NF.2 (compare two fractions with different numerators and different denominators, e.g., by creating common denominators or numerators, or by comparing to a benchmark fraction such as \frac{1}{2}. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with symbols >,=, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model).  In Lesson 7, Problem Set, Problem 2 states, “Compare each pair of fractions using >, <, or =. a. \frac{3}{4} ___ \frac{3}{7} b. \frac{2}{5} ___ \frac{4}{9} c. \frac{2}{3} ___ \frac{5}{6} d. \frac{3}{8} ___ \frac{1}{4} e. \frac{7}{11} ___ \frac{7}{13} f. \frac{8}{9} ___ \frac{2}{3} g. \frac{2}{3} ___ \frac{5}{6} h. \frac{3}{4} ___ \frac{7}{12}.” Problem 5 states, “Select True if the comparison is true. Select False if the comparison is not true. \frac{89}{100}>\frac{9}{10}; \frac{7}{12}<\frac{2}{3}\frac{3}{5}>\frac{4}{10}.” In Lesson 9, Homework, Problem 3 states, “Rowan has 3 pieces of yarn, as described below. A red piece of yarn that is \frac{3}{4} foot long; A yellow piece of yarn that is \frac{6}{8} foot long; A blue piece of yarn that is \frac{4}{12} foot long. Which number sentence correctly compares the lengths of 2 of these pieces of yarn? A. \frac{3}{4}<\frac{6}{8}; B. \frac{4}{12}<\frac{3}{4}; C. \frac{3}{4}>\frac{6}{8}; D. \frac{4}{12}>\frac{6}{8}.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Topic B: Measures of Angles, Lessons 5-10 provide an opportunity for students to engage with the full intent of standards 4.MD.5 (recognize angles as geometric shapes that are formed wherever two rays share a common endpoint, and understand concepts of angle measurement) and 4.MD.6 (measure angles in whole-number degrees using a protractor. Sketch angles of specified measure). In Lesson 7, Problem Set, Problem 1 states, “Do not use your protractor to solve! a. Look at the angle shown. Which measure is closest to the measure of the angle? a. 140 b. 90 c. 40. d. 15.” In Lesson 8, Problem Set, Problem 2 states, “Maria says that this angle measures 153 degrees. Is she correct or incorrect? Why.” Lesson 9, Anchor Tasks, Problem 2 states, “Sketch angles that have each of the following angle measures. a. 80° b. 133°”

Criterion 1c - 1g

Each grade’s materials are coherent and consistent with the Standards.

8/8
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for coherence. The materials: address the major clusters of the grade, have supporting content connected to major work, make connections between clusters and domains, and have content from prior and future grades connected to grade-level work.

Indicator 1c

When implemented as designed, the majority of the materials address the major clusters of each grade.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations that, when implemented as designed, the majority of the materials address the major work of the grade. The instructional materials devote at least 65 percent of instructional time to the major clusters of the grade: 

  • The approximate number of units devoted to major work of the grade (including assessments and supporting work connected to the major work) is 5.6 out of 8,  approximately 70%.

  • The number of lessons devoted to major work of the grade (including supporting work connected to the major work) is 101 out of 142, approximately 71%. The total number of lessons includes 134 lessons plus 8 assessments for a total of 142 lessons. 

  • The number of days devoted to major work (including assessments, flex days, and supporting work connected to the major work), is 111 out of 154, approximately 72%. There are a total of 20 flex days and 16 of those days are included within units focused on major work, including assessments. By adding 16 flex days focused on major work to the 95 lessons devoted to major work, there is a total of 111 days devoted to major work.

  • The number of days devoted to major work (excluding flex days, while including assessments and supporting work connected to the major work) is 101 out of 142, approximately 71%. While it is recommended that flex days be used to support major work of the grade within the program, there is no specific guidance for the use of these days.

A lesson-level analysis is most representative of the instructional materials as the lessons include major work, supporting work connected to major work, and the assessments embedded within each unit. As a result, approximately 71% of the instructional materials focus on major work of the grade.

Indicator 1d

Supporting content enhances focus and coherence simultaneously by engaging students in the major work of the grade.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The instructional materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations that supporting work enhances focus and coherence simultaneously by engaging students in the major work of the grade. Materials are designed so supporting standards/clusters are connected to the major standards/clusters of the grade. These connections are sometimes listed for teachers as “Foundational Standards'' on the lesson page. Examples of connections include:

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 11, Problem Set, Problem 7 connects the supporting work of 4.MD.3 (apply the area and perimeter formulas for rectangles in real world and mathematical problems) to the major work 4.OA.3 (solve multistep word problems posed with whole numbers and having whole-number answers using the four operations, including problems in which remainders must be interpreted). It states, “You want to carpet 3 rooms of a house. Using the dimensions below, determine how much carpet is needed: Room 1: Perimeter is 38 yards and the width of the room in 12 yards. Room 2: Perimeter is 50 yards and the width is 13 yards. Room 3: Perimeter is 46 yards and the width is 10 yards. For each room, determine how much carpet is needed.”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 3,  Anchor Task, Problem 1 connects the supporting work of 4.OA.4 (find all the factor pairs for a whole number in the range 1-100) to the major work 4.OA.3 (solve multistep word problems posed with whole numbers and having whole-number answers using the four operations). It states, “Mr. Duffy wants to set up the desks in his room in rows and columns. There are 28 desks in his classroom. What are the different ways he could make rows and columns with 28 desks? Draw arrays to represent the possible arrangements.”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 22, Homework, Problem 3 connects the supporting work of 4.MD.4 (make a line plot to display a data set of measurements in fractions of a unit. Solve problems involving addition and subtraction of fractions by using information presented in line plots) to the major work of 4.NF.3c (add and subtract mixed numbers with like denominators, e.g., by replacing each mixed number with an equivalent fraction, and/or by using properties of operations and the relationship between addition and subtraction). It states, “Greta recorded the number of miles she walked each day last week on a line plot, as shown below. How many miles in all did Greta walk last week?  A. 8 miles, B. 10 miles. C. 12$$\frac{1}{2}$$ miles, D. 14$$\frac{1}{2}$$ miles.” The line plot includes 1, 1\frac{1}{2}, 2, 2\frac{1}{2}, and 3.

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 9, Target Task, connects the supporting work of 4.MD.2 (use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals, and problems that require expressing measurements given in a larger unit in terms of a smaller unit) to the major work of 4.NBT.6 (find whole-number quotients and remainders with up to four-digit dividends and one-digit divisors, using strategies based on place value, the properties of operations, and/or the relationship between multiplication and division. Illustrate and explain the calculation by using equations, rectangular arrays, and/or area models). It states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Marco rode his bike 1 mile. Marco rode four times as far as Allison. Jason rode his bike 5 fewer yards than Allison. How far did Jason ride?”

Indicator 1e

Materials include problems and activities that serve to connect two or more clusters in a domain or two or more domains in a grade.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for including problems and activities that serve to connect two or more clusters in a domain or two or more domains in a grade. Examples of connections from supporting work to supporting work and/or from major work to major work throughout the grade-level materials, when appropriate, include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 1, Problem Set, Problem 2 connects the major work of 4.NBT.B to the major work of 4.NBT.A as students use place value understanding to round multi-digit whole numbers to any place. Problem 2 states, “Find 412 in your 1,000 book. a. Which hundreds chart is it on? b. Which two tens is it between? c. What would you have to change to make its neighbor to its left?”

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 17, Homework, Problem 4 connects the major work of 4.NBT.B to the major work of 4.OA.A as students use their knowledge of multiplication to solve multi-step word problems. It states, “4. Solve. Show or explain your work. Patti’s sandals weigh 1,167 grams. She bought 3 pairs, all different colors. All 3 pairs of sandals together weigh 239 grams more than her winter boots. What is the weight of Patti’s winter boots?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 12, Homework, Problem 2 connects the major work of 4.NBT.B to the major work of 4.OA.A as students find whole-number quotients and remainders in multistep word problems. It states, “Mrs. Turner’s fourth grade class is making gift bags for their 7 parent volunteers. They collected bite sized candy bars which they are distributing equally among each bag. Here is a list of the candy: 37 Dark Chocolate bars, 22 Milky Way bars, 29 Three Musketeer Bars. If Mrs. Turner will keep the leftover candy bars for herself, how many candy bars will Mrs. Turner get?” 

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 3, Problem Set, Problem 2 connects the supporting work of 4.MD.A to the supporting work of 4.OA.C as students analyze patterns to make the following statements true. It states, “Fill in the blank to make the statement true. a. 4 hundreds 29 ones is ____ones; b. 4 m 29 cm is ____cm; c. 2 thousands 456 ones is ____ones; d. 2 km 456 m is ____m; e. 13 thousands 709 ones is ____ones; f. 13 kg 709 g is ____g; g. ____is 456 thousands 829 ones; h. ____mL is 456 L 829 mL.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 14, Problem Set, Problem 2 connects the supporting work of 4.MD.C to the supporting work of 4.G.A as students use their ability to measure angles to help classify triangles. It states, “2. △DEF is scalene. What do you observe about its angles? Explain.”

Indicator 1f

Content from future grades is identified and related to grade-level work, and materials relate grade-level concepts explicitly to prior knowledge from earlier grades.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations that content from future grades is identified and related to grade-level work, and materials relate grade-level concepts explicitly to prior knowledge from earlier grades. 

Content from future grades is identified within materials and related to grade-level work. These references are consistently included within the Unit Summary. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Unit Summary states, “Students’ work in this unit will prepare them for fluency with the multiplication algorithm in Grade 5 (5.NBT.5). Students also learn about new applications of multiplication in future grades, including scaling quantities up and down in Grade 5 (5.NF.5), all the way up to rates and slopes in the middle grades (6.RP, 7.RP). Every subsequent grade level depends on the understanding of multiplication and its algorithm, making this unit an important one for students in Grade 4.”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Unit Summary states, “Students’ understanding of fractions is developed further in Unit 7, in which students explore decimal numbers via their relationship to decimal fractions, expressing a given quantity in both fraction and decimal forms (4.NF.5—7). Then, in Grade 5, students extend their understanding and ability with operations with fractions (5.NF.1—7), working on all cases of fraction addition, subtraction, and multiplication and the simple cases of division of a unit fraction by a whole number or vice versa. Students then develop a comprehensive understanding of and ability to compute fraction division problems in all cases in Grade 6 (6.NS.1). Beyond these next few units and years, it is easy to find the application of this learning in nearly any mathematical subject in middle school and high school, from ratios and proportions in the middle grades to functional understanding in algebra.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Unit Summary states, “In Grade 5, students will build on this solid foundation of decimal fractions to develop an even deeper understanding of decimals' relationship to place value and to perform decimal operations with similar models (5.NBT.1—4, 5.NBT.7). By the end of 6th grade, students will be fluent with the use of the standard algorithm to compute with decimals (6.NS.3). From that point forward, students will use their understanding of decimals as a specific kind of number in their mathematical work, including ratios, functions, and many others.”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Unit Summary states, “But, the unit not only looks back on the year in review, it also prepares students for work in future grades, including the very direct link to converting from smaller units to larger ones in Grade 5 (5.MD.1) and also to ratios and proportions in the middle grades (6.RP.1) as well as many other areas to come.”

Materials relate grade-level concepts from Grade 4 explicitly to prior knowledge from earlier grades. These references can be found within materials in the Unit Summary, within Lesson Tips for Teachers, and in the Foundational Skills information in each lesson. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Unit Summary states, “Students’ understanding of the base ten system begins as early as Kindergarten, when students learn to decompose teen numbers as ten ones and some ones (K.NBT.1). This understanding continues to develop in Grade 1, when students learn that ten is a unit and therefore decompose teen numbers into one ten (as opposed to ten ones) and some ones and learn that the decade numbers can be referred to as some tens (1.NBT.1). Students also start to compare two-digit numbers (1.NBT.2) and add and subtract within 100 based on place value (1.NBT.3—5). In second grade, students generalize the place value system even further, understanding one hundred as a unit (2.NBT.1) and comparing, adding, and subtracting numbers within 1,000 (2.NBT.2—9). In Grade 3, place value (NBT) standards are additional cluster content, but they still spend time fluently adding and subtracting within 1,000 and rounding three-digit numbers to the nearest 10 and 100 (3.NBT.1—2).”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Unit Summary states, “Students developed a foundational understanding of division in Grade 3, when they came to understand division in relation to equal groups, arrays, and area. They developed a variety of strategies to build towards fluency with division within 100, and they applied that knowledge to the context of one- and two-step problems using the four operations. Students also came to understand the distributive property, which underpins the standard algorithm for division.”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 1, Tips for Teachers states, “Depending on students’ comfort level with key representations for fractions from Grade 3, particularly tape diagrams/fraction strips and number lines, Lessons 1 and 2 can be combined.” 

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Unit Summary states, “Students have previously encountered an example of needing to change their understanding of what a number is in Grade 3, when the term came to include fractions. Their Grade 3 understanding of fractions (3.NF.A), as well as their work with fractions so far this year (4.NF.A, 4.NF.B), will provide the foundation upon which decimal numbers, their equivalence to fractions, their comparison, and their addition will be built. Students also developed an understanding of money in Grade 2, working with quantities either less than one dollar or whole dollar amounts (2.MD.8). But with the knowledge acquired in this unit, students will be able to work with money represented as decimals, as it so often is.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 2, Foundational Skills lists the standard 3.G.A.1 (Understand that shapes in different categories [e.g., rhombuses, rectangles, and others] may share attributes [e.g., having four sides], and that the shared attributes can define a larger category [e.g., quadrilaterals]. Recognize rhombuses, rectangles, and squares as examples of quadrilaterals, and draw examples of quadrilaterals that do not belong to any of these subcategories) as a foundational standard from Grade 3. It is also noted that this skill is covered in the unit. 

Indicator 1g

In order to foster coherence between grades, materials can be completed within a regular school year with little to no modification.

Narrative Evidence Only
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 foster coherence between grades, materials can be completed within a regular school year with little to no modification. According to the Pacing Guide, “The fourth-grade math curriculum was designed to be implemented over the course of a single school year. It includes eight units of study over 155 instructional days (including days for lessons, flex days, and unit assessments). We intentionally did not account for all 180 instructional days in order for teachers to fit in additional review or extension, teacher-created assessments, and school-based events. Each unit includes a specific number of lessons, a day for assessment, and a recommended number of flex days (see the table below). These flex days can be used at the teacher’s discretion, however, for units that include both major and supporting/ additional work, it is strongly recommended that the flex days be spent on content that aligns with the major work of the grade.”  

Included in the 154 days are: 

  • 134 lesson days 

  • 12 flex days 

  • 8 unit assessment days

There are eight units and, within those units, there are 12 to 22 lessons that contain a mixture of Anchor Tasks, Problem Set Problems, Homework Problems, and Target Tasks. The number of minutes needed to complete each lesson component are aligned to guidance in the Pacing Guide. Each 60 minute lesson is composed of:

  • 25 - 30 minutes Anchor Tasks

  • 15 - 20 minutes Problem Set

  • 5 - 10 minutes Target Task 

Additionally, the Pacing Guide notes, “it is recommended to also allocate 10 minutes for daily application and 15 minutes for daily fluency. These additional blocks are meant to provide sufficient time and practice for these aspects of rigor.”

Gateway Two

Rigor & the Mathematical Practices

Meets Expectations

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Gateway Two Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for rigor and balance and practice-content connections. The materials reflect the balances in the Standards and help students develop conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency, and application. The materials make meaningful connections between the Standards for Mathematical Content and the Standards for Mathematical Practice (MPs).

Criterion 2a - 2d

Materials reflect the balances in the Standards and help students meet the Standards’ rigorous expectations, by giving appropriate attention to: developing students’ conceptual understanding; procedural skill and fluency; and engaging applications.

8/8
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for rigor. The materials develop conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts, give attention throughout the year to procedural skill and fluency, spend sufficient time working with engaging applications of mathematics, and do not always treat the three aspects of rigor together or separately.

Indicator 2a

Materials develop conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts, especially where called for in specific content standards or cluster headings.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for developing conceptual understanding of key mathematical concepts and provide opportunities for students to independently demonstrate conceptual understanding throughout Grade 4. 

Materials develop conceptual understanding throughout the grade level. According to Course Summary, Learn More About Fishtank Math, Our Approach, “Procedural Fluency AND Conceptual Understanding: We believe that knowing ‘how’ to solve a problem is not enough; students must also know ‘why’ mathematical procedures and concepts exist.” Each lesson begins with Anchor Tasks and Guiding Questions, designed to highlight key learning aligned to the objective and to support the development of conceptual understanding through student discourse and reflection. This is followed by a Problem Set, Homework and Target Task. Examples include: 

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 7, Anchor Task, Problem 2 states,  “Write each of the following in expanded and written form. 1. 27,085; 2. 601,408; 3. 7,056.” Guiding Questions include, “27,085 has a 0 in the hundreds place. How did you account for that when you wrote the number in expanded form? In written form? How can the placement of the comma in the number help with determining how to write the number in word form? How can reading the number out loud or to a partner help with determining how to write the number in word form?” This problem and Guiding Questions provide the teacher an opportunity to help students develop conceptual understanding of 4.NBT.2 (Read and write multi-digit whole numbers in base ten numbers, number names, and expanded form).

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 5, Anchor Task, Problem 2, students multiply a whole number of up to four digits by a one-digit whole number. It states, “Solve. a. 5 × 4; b. 5 × 40; c. 5 × 400; d. 5 × 4,000. 2. What do you notice about #1? What do you wonder?” Guiding Questions include, “How can you use the patterns you noticed in Anchor Task #1 to solve? How is this problem different from that in Anchor Task #1? I think 5 × 4,000 = 2,000. What mistake did I make? How can you use “times as many” to describe these equations?” This problem shows opportunities for students to engage with teacher support and/or guidance while developing conceptual understanding of 4.NBT.5 (Multiply a whole number of up to four digits by a one-digit whole number, and multiply two two-digit numbers, using strategies based on place value and the properties of operations. Illustrate and explain the calculation by using equations, rectangular arrays, and/or area models).

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 8, Anchor Tasks, Problem 2, Fill in the blank with <, =, > to complete the equation. Justify your comparison. a. 1.24____2.24; b. 2.38____2.83; c. 4.38____4.5; d. 6.37____6.3; 3. 10.0____10.00; f. 15.2____15.02.” Guiding Questions include, “How can you justify your answer with a picture? How can you justify your answer using the meaning of a decimal as a fraction? Is it easier to represent particular problems with certain models?”  This activity helps students develop conceptual understanding of 4.NF.7 (Compare two decimals to hundredths by reasoning about their size. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two decimals refer to the same whole).

Materials provide opportunities for students to independently demonstrate conceptual understanding throughout the grade level. Problem Sets and Homework Problems can be completed independently during a lesson. Target Tasks, or end of lesson checks for understanding of key concepts, are designed for independent completion. Many of these problems provide opportunities for students to independently demonstrate conceptual understanding. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 1, Problem Set, Problem 2, students recognize a digit in one place represents ten times what it represents in the place to its right. It states, “Find 412 in your 1,000 book. a. Which hundreds chart is it on? b. Which two tens is it between? c. What would you have to change to make its neighbor to its left?” This problem shows conceptual understanding of 4.NBT.1 (Recognize that in a multi-digit whole number, a digit in one place represents ten times what it represents in the place to its right).

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 11, Problem Set, Problem 6, students compare and analyze fractions with different denominators as they solve, “Andrea bought a bucket of colored chalk.The list below shows the fraction of each color of chalk in the bucket. $$\frac{2}{6}$$ are yellow; \frac{5}{12} are blue; \frac{3}{12} are green. a. Which is greater, the amount of yellow chalk in the bucket or the amount of green chalk in the bucket? b. Andrea told Michelle that less than \frac{1}{2} the chalk in the bucket is blue. Michelle said she is mistaken. Who is correct? Explain why you chose your answer.” This problem shows conceptual understanding of 4.NF.2 (Compare two fractions with different numerators and different denominators, e.g., by creating common denominators or numerators, or by comparing to a benchmark fraction such as 1/2. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model).

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 4, Target Task, Problem 2, students “Solve. Show or explain your work. Of the computer games Lynne owns, \frac{4}{12} are sports games and \frac{3}{12} are educational. What fraction of the games are neither sport games nor educational games?” This problem will show students’ conceptual understanding of 4.NF.3.d (Solve word problems involving addition and subtraction of fractions).

Indicator 2b

Materials give attention throughout the year to individual standards that set an expectation for procedural skill and fluency.

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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for developing procedural skills and fluency while providing opportunities for students to independently demonstrate procedural skills and fluency throughout the grade level. 

According to Teacher Tools, Math Teacher Tools, Procedural Skill and Fluency, “In our curriculum, lessons explicitly indicate when fluency or culminating standards are addressed. Anchor Problems and Tasks are designed to address both conceptual foundations of the skills as well as procedural execution. Problem Set sections for relevant standards include problems and resources that engage students in procedural practice and fluency development, as well as independent demonstration of fluency. Skills aligned to fluency standards also appear in other units after they are introduced in order to provide opportunities for continued practice, development, and demonstration.”

Opportunities to develop procedural skill and fluency with teacher support and/or guidance occurs in the Anchor Tasks, at the beginning of each lesson, and the Problem Sets, during a lesson. Separate fluency activities can be used independently or with teacher support.  Examples Include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 15, Fluency Activities,  students play the game, “Get to 1000,” with a partner. It states, “Students shuffle cards and put them face down. Each student selects 6 cards and makes two three-digit numbers that they then add together. The cards are added to the bottom of the deck after each turn. After the first round, students pull another 3 cards to make a three-digit number to add to their running total. The objective is to be the student to first reach exactly 1,000. In order to reach exactly 1,000, a student may choose to take just 1 or 2 cards instead of 3. If the only values a student can make from the cards they’ve chosen is larger than what is needed to reach 1,000, they lose their turn.” This activity helps students develop 4.NBT.4 (Fluently add and subtract multi-digit numbers using the standard algorithm).

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 1, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 states, “Look at the patterns that a skip-counting sequence made: (hundred chart.) What will the next three numbers in the sequence be? Will 62 be in the pattern? How do you know? How many fours are equal to the number 32?” Teacher Guiding Questions include, “What did you notice about the numbers in the sequence in the hundred chart? Can you write a multiplication sentence to match #3? All of the shaded numbers are multiples of 4. What patterns do you notice about all of the multiples of 4? What are the multiples of 9? What patterns do you notice about them?” This problem provides an opportunity for students to develop fluency of 4.OA.4 (Find all factor pairs for a whole number in the range 1—100).

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 3, Anchor Task, Problem 2 states, “First, estimate the following sums. Then add. a. \frac{2}{8}+\frac{3}{8} b. \frac{1}{6}+\frac{3}{6}”. The Guiding Questions prompt teachers to ask, “Before adding, do you expect our sum to be greater than or less than one half? Why? How can we think of this in unit form? How will that help us solve? What picture can we draw to model the problem? Can we rewrite our solution using larger units? Based on our estimate, is our computed sum reasonable? Why or why not? (Ask similar questions for part (b).)” This problem provides an opportunity for students to develop procedural skill and fluency of 4.NF.3 (Understand addition and subtraction of fractions as joining and separating parts referring to the same whole).

The instructional materials provide opportunities for students to independently demonstrate procedural skills and fluency throughout the grade level. Problem Sets and Homework can be completed independently during a lesson. Target Tasks, or end of lesson checks for understanding, are designed for independent completion. Fluency specific activities also provide opportunities for independent application of fluency. Examples include:

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 4, Target Task, students divide multi-digit numbers by one digit divisors. The task states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. 1. 87 ÷ 4; 2. 294 ÷ 6; 4,256 ÷ 7.” This problem provides an opportunity for students to independently demonstrate procedural skills and fluency of 4.NBT.6 (Find whole-number quotients and remainders with up to four-digit dividends and one-digit divisors).

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 1, Target Task, Problem 1, students find multiples. The problem states, “Select the list of numbers that are all multiples of 9. A. 9, 27, 35, 63; B. 9, 48, 81, 90; C. 18, 36, 45, 64; D. 18, 54, 72, 99.” This problem provides an opportunity for students to independently demonstrate fluency of 4.OA.4 (Find all factor pairs for a whole number in the range 1—100). 

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 12, Target Task states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. 1. 3\frac{2}{6}+\frac{3}{6}; 2. 6\frac{9}{10}+\frac{3}{10}.” These problems provide an opportunity for students to independently demonstrate procedural skills of 4.NF.3 (Add and subtract mixed numbers with like denominators).

Indicator 2c

Materials are designed so that teachers and students spend sufficient time working with engaging applications of the mathematics.

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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for being designed so that teachers and students spend sufficient time working with engaging applications of the mathematics.

Materials include multiple routine and non-routine applications of the mathematics throughout the grade level. Anchor Tasks, at the beginning of each lesson, routinely include engaging single and multi-step application problems. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 3, Anchor Tasks, Problem 2, students engage in solving non-routine application problems as they interpret a multiplication equation as a comparison (4.OA.1) and multiply or divide to solve word problems involving multiplicative comparisons (4.OA.2). The problem states, “Jade has $63. Keith has $9. How many times as much money does Jade have as Keith? Represent the situation as an equation to solve. Guiding Questions for teachers include, “How can we represent this situation with a tape diagram? Where are the various parts of the problem represented in your tape diagram? How can we represent this situation with an equation? How can you use a letter to represent the unknown? Where do you see ‘seven times as many’ in the equation? May gets $4 in allowance every week. Her older sister, Tatiana, gets $12 in allowance every week. How many times more does Tatiana get in allowance than May? How can we represent this situation with a tape diagram? With an equation?” 

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 7, Anchor Task, Problem 1, students solve routine problems involving multiplication of 2-digit numbers by 1-digit numbers (4.NBT.5). The problem states, “Mr. Wynn gets some butcher paper from the teacher supply room to put down the length of the hallway. The butcher paper is 3 feet tall and 20 feet long. When he puts it up in the hallway, he realizes he needs a little more to fully cover the wall. The extra piece he needed is 3 feet tall and 3 feet long. a. How many square feet of butcher block paper did Mr. Wynn put in the hallway? b. What was the total length of width of the space Mr. Wynn ended up covering?” Guiding Questions for teachers include, “What model can we draw to represent the problem? How can we record that work with equations? Does finding the area of each separate piece of butcher block paper and adding those areas together give the same result as finding the overall length and width of the space Mr. Wynn needed to cover and finding the overall area? Why?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 12, Anchor Tasks, Problem 4 provides students the opportunity to solve routine problems involving division in which remainders must be interpreted (4.OA.3). The problem states, “Joao loves The Diary of a Wimpy Kid and convinces Ms. Glynn to buy as many as she can for his classmates to read. Ms. Glynn has $150 left in her classroom budget to buy them. Each book costs $8. How many copies can she get?” Guiding Questions for teachers include, “What is happening in this situation? What can you draw to represent this situation? What quantities and relationships do we know? What is the question asking you to find out? What equation can we use to represent each part of the problem? What letter should we use to represent the unknown? How did you find the answer to the question? Did anyone find the answer differently? How did you interpret the remainder in the context of this problem? Why did you discard the remainder? Is your answer reasonable? How do you know?”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 12, Anchor Task, Problem 1, students engage in solving non-routine application problems as they use the four operations to solve word problems involving distance, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects, and money (4.MD.2). The problem states, “Watch the following video: The Water Boy (Act-1). Here is how much water the water bottle holds: [picture shows 1.5 liter water bottle] Here is how much water is left in the bottle: [picture shows a measuring cup with water just below the 900 ml mark]. "How much water did he drink?” Guiding Questions for teachers include, “How can you determine how much water he drank? Is there more than one way to solve?”  

Materials provide opportunities within Problem Sets and Homework, and Daily Word Problems for students to independently demonstrate multiple routine and non-routine applications throughout the grade level. Target Tasks, or end of lesson checks for understanding, are designed for independent completion. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1 Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 18, Target Task, students independently solve non-routine multistep word problems (4.OA.A). The problem states, “Quarterback Brett Favre passed for 71,838 yards between the years 1991 and 2011. His all-time high was 4,413 passing yards in one year. In his second-highest year, he threw 4,212 passing yards. How many passing yards did Brett Favre throw in the remaining years? Is your answer reasonable? Explain.”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 16, Additional Practice, Word Problem Practice, students independently solve routine fraction word problems with addition and subtraction (4.NF.3d). “Negin has watched 415 hours less TV than Ji-Yu. Negin has watched 1315 hours of TV. How many hours of TV did Ji-Yu watch?”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 20, Homework, Problem 6, students independently engage in solving non-routine application involving problems involving addition and subtractions of fractions (4.NF.3), and multiplication of a fraction by a whole number (4.NF.4). The problem states, “a. Kayla, Jim, and Maria each ran after school last week. Kayla ran \frac{2}{3} mile each day after school for 5 days. How many total miles did Kayla run last week? b. Last week Jim trained to run long distance. Each day, he ran \frac{3}{4} mile before and \frac{3}{4} mile after school for 5 days. How many total miles did Jim run last week? c. Maria ran \frac{3}{4} mile each day for 3 days and \frac{1}{4} mile each day for 2 days. How many total miles did Maria run last week?”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 14, Target Task, students independently solve routine word problems involving money (4.MD.2). The problem states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Write your answer in decimal form. David needs $4 to buy some candy he wants after school. He searched the couch cushions and found 6 quarters, 4 dimes, and 26 pennies. How much more money does he need to make?”

Indicator 2d

The three aspects of rigor are not always treated together and are not always treated separately. There is a balance of the three aspects of rigor within the grade.

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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations in that the three aspects of rigor are not always treated together and are not always treated separately. There is a balance of the three aspects of rigor within the grade.

All three aspects of rigor are present independently throughout Grade 4. Examples where instructional materials attend to conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency, or application include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 14, Anchor Task, Problem 2, students develop procedural skill and fluency as they add multi-digit numbers using rounding strategies. The problem states, “Estimate. Then solve. a. 207,426 + 128,744. b. 252, 393 = ◻ – 747,607. c. k  = 94,989 + 619,732 + 4,506.” (4.NBT.4: Fluently add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm.)

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 8, Problem Set, Problem 2, students develop conceptual understanding as they solve three-digit dividend division problems. The problem states, “Complete the steps to find the quotient of 492 ÷ 6. Step 1. ( ___ ÷ 6) + (180 ÷ 6) + (12 ÷ 6). Step 2. ___ + ___ + 2. Quotient ___. ” (4.NBT.6: Find whole-number quotients and remainders with up to four-digit dividends and one-digit divisors, using strategies based on place value, the properties of operations, and/or the relationship between multiplication and division. Illustrate and explain the calculation by using equations, rectangular arrays, and/or area models.)

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversion, Lesson 4, Target Task, Problem 2, students convert metric units (length, mass, and capacity) as they solve application problems. The problem states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Jeff is making fruit punch. The recipe includes equal amounts of mango and pineapple juice and 490 mL of orange juice. If the recipe makes 1 L 50 mL, how much of each of the mango and pineapple juices are in the recipe?” (4.MD.2: Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals, and problems that require expressing measurements given in a larger unit in terms of a smaller unit. Represent measurement quantities using diagrams such as number line diagrams that feature a measurement scale.)

Multiple aspects of rigor are engaged simultaneously to develop students’ mathematical understanding of a single unit of study throughout the materials. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 18, Anchor Task, Problem 3, students develop conceptual understanding and application as they add and subtract whole numbers. The problem states, “There were 12,345 people at a concert on Saturday night. On Sunday night, there were 1,795 fewer people at the concert than on Saturday night. How many people attended the concert on both nights?” Guiding Questions for teachers include, “How can we use a tape diagram to solve? What will it look like? How can we write an equation (or equations) to represent this problem, using a letter to represent the unknown? Did anyone assess reasonableness as they were solving the problem, before being asked to do so? Did you use estimation or the relationship between addition and subtraction to assess reasonableness?” (4.NBT.4: Fluently add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm.)

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 12, Target Task, students develop procedural skill and  fluency and application as they solve word problems using fractions. The task states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Jay has \frac{29}{100}L of oil.  He buys another 1\frac{5}{10}L.  He still needs \frac{71}{100}L to deep fry clams. How much oil does Jay need to make fried clams?” (4.NF.5: Express a fraction with denominator 10 as an equivalent fraction with denominator 100, and use this technique to add two fractions with respective denominators 10 and 100.)

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 12, Problem Set, Problem 7, students develop conceptual understanding and application as they solve word problems involving time. The problem states, “A cartoon lasts \frac{1}{2} hour. A movie is 6 times as long as the cartoon. How many minutes does it take to watch both the cartoon and the movie? If the cartoon started at 11:04 am and the movie came on immediately after the cartoon, what time will the movie be over?” Discussion of Problem Set questions include, “How many different ways were 7 halves represented? (30 min 7, as \frac{7}{2} and as \frac{6}{2}+\frac{1}{2}) What advantage is there to knowing all of these representations when it comes to solving a problem like this one? What shortcuts or efficiencies did you use today when solving your problems? How do you decide whether to start by converting to a smaller unit or to work with the mixed number or decimal measurements?” (4.MD.2: Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals, and problems that require expressing measurements given in a larger unit in terms of a smaller unit.)

Criterion 2e - 2i

Materials meaningfully connect the Standards for Mathematical Content and Standards for Mathematical Practice (MPs).

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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for practice-content connections. The materials meaningfully connect the Standards for Mathematical Content and the Standards for Mathematical Practice (MPs).

Indicator 2e

Materials support the intentional development of MP1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them; and MP2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards.

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Indicator Rating Details

he materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for supporting the intentional development of MP1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them; and MP2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards. MPs are explicitly identified for teachers within the Unit Summary and specific lessons (Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, or Anchor Task notes).

MP1 is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students make sense of problems and persevere in solving them as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition and Subtraction, Lesson 18, Homework, Problem 1, students “Assess the reasonableness of answers by choosing a place to round the given values to, rounding them, and using those to compute the solution or using the relationship between addition and subtraction to check answers.” The problem states, “Zachary’s final project for a college course took a semester to write and had 95,234 words. Zachary wrote 35,295 words the first month and 19,240 words the second month. a. Round each value to the nearest ten thousand to estimate how many words Zachary wrote during the remaining part of the semester. b. Find the exact number of words written during the remaining part of the semester. c. Use your answer from (a) to explain why your answer in (b) is reasonable.”

  • In Unit 2: Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 18, Target Task, students “Assess the reasonableness of an answer (MP.1).” The problem states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Michael earns $9 per hour. He works 28 hours each week. David earns $8 per hour. He works 40 hours each week. After 6 weeks, who earns more money? How much more money?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 12, Anchor Task, Problems 1 and 2, with teacher support, students “Make sense of a three-act task and persevere in solving it (MP.1);” “Interpret the remainder in the context of a problem (MP.1);” and “Assess the reasonableness of an answer (MP.1).” The problem states, “Act 1: Look at the following image [image of a boy sitting reading a book]. How long will it take him to finish the book?” Guiding questions include, “What do you notice? What do you wonder? Which of our noticings and wonderings is the question we most want the answer to? (The question you want to zero in on is stated in the task above.) Make an estimate of the answer. What information do you need to figure out the answer?”  Problem 2 continues with Act 2: “Use the following information to solve - Diary of a Wimpy Kid is 221 pages long. Joao has already read 15 pages. He only reads during independent reading and reads nine pages during each block.” Guiding questions include, “Do you have all the information you need to solve?” 

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 3, Anchor Tasks, Problem 4, students “Assess the reasonableness of answers based on estimates (MP.1).” The problem states, “First, estimate the following solutions. Then add or subtract. a. \frac{3}{4}+\frac{1}{4} b. 1-\frac{3}{10}.” Guiding questions include, “What do you expect the solution to be? Why? How can we think of this in unit form? How will that help us solve? What picture can we draw to model the problem? Can we rewrite our solution using larger units? Based on our estimate, is the computed solution reasonable? Why or why not? What did we learn about adding and subtracting like units in Anchor Task #1? What does that tell us about how we can rewrite Part (b) to solve?”

MP2 is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students reason abstractly and quantitatively as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 2, Anchor Tasks, Problem 3, students “Write an equation to represent a multiplicative comparison word problem with a smaller unknown, using a letter to represent the unknown (MP.2).” The problem states, “Ella weighs 36 pounds. Her brother, Farid, weighs four times less than her. How many pounds does Farid weigh? Represent the situation as an equation to solve.” Guiding questions include, “What is different about the way this question is phrased from the ones we’ve seen so far in this lesson and the previous one? How can we represent this situation with a tape diagram? Where do you see ‘four time less than’ in the tape diagram? How can we represent this situation with an equation? How can you use a letter to represent the unknown? Where do you see ‘four times less than’ in the equation?” 

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 3, Anchor Task, Problem 1, students represent decimals to tenths using pictorial base ten blocks and convert between fraction, decimal, unit, and fraction and decimal expanded form. “Below are representations for a ten, a one, and a tenth. Based on the base ten block diagrams below, fill in the table with the value of each diagram (a)-(c).” Notes, “This task is an opportunity for students to reason abstractly and quantitatively (MP.2). The base ten blocks allow students to see how many copies of each unit there are in a value and use the idea of copies to translate each value to a multiplication expression, making the connection between the number, its representation, and its expanded forms more apparent.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 13, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students, “Solve addition and subtraction problems to find unknown angles on a diagram in real-world and mathematical problems that involve more than two adjacent angles, e.g., by using an equation with a symbol for the unknown angle measure (MP.2, MP.4)” and “Write an equation to represent the unknown angle measure in a compound angle (MP.2).” The problem states, “Use patterns blocks of various types to create a design in which you can see a decomposition of 360°. Which shapes did you use? Write an equation to show how you composed 360°.” Guiding Questions include, “What is the angle measure of each angle that you used to compose the 360° angle? Write a number sentence to represent the relationship between the angle measure of each of the pattern blocks and the total angle measure. (Remove a shape from the composed figure.) Let’s say we didn’t know the size of the missing angle. How could we find it? How can we use a letter to represent our unknown in the number sentence?”

Indicator 2f

Materials support the intentional development of MP3: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards.

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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for supporting the intentional development of MP3: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards. MP3 is explicitly identified for teachers within the unit summary or specific lessons (criteria for success, tips for teachers, or anchor problem notes) and students engage with the full intent of the MP through a variety of lesson problems and assessment items.

Students construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others in connection to grade-level content as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 12, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students “Determine the most appropriate place value to round to to have a reasonable estimate, based on the context of the problem.” The problem states, “In the year 2015, there were 935,292 visitors to the White House. They each got a map to guide them around. President Obama said that they can round to the nearest thousand to decide about how many maps to order for next year. Do you agree or disagree with President Obama? Explain.” Guiding Questions include, “What does it mean for an answer or estimate to be reasonable? Was President Obama’s estimate reasonable? Why or why not? Let’s round 935,292 to every place. What happens as we round it to smaller and smaller places? Of all of the possible rounded values, which one would have been best for President Obama to use? Why?” Note for the teacher include, “There isn’t necessarily a right answer to the last question, especially since a past figure is being used to predict a future one. But answers that are probably not correct are those that result in an estimate that is lower than the actual figure (like Obama’s).”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 4, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students “understand and explain why various mental strategies work.” The problem states, “Three different students solved the problem 232 ÷ 8 below. Study their work and determine whether the strategy they used works.” Three student examples are provided. Guiding questions include, “How does each visual representation show a solution to 232 ÷ 8? Can you write an equation to represent the way each student thought about computing 232 ÷ 8? Look at Student A and Student B. How are their strategies similar? How are they different? What is another way you could have broken up 232 into chunks to divide? How is what Student C similar to Student A and Student B? How is it different? Are there other ways of solving 232 ÷ 8  that you can think of that aren’t represented here?”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 7, Target Task, Problem 2, students “justify a comparison using a visual model or reasoning.” The problem states, “Ryan says that 0.6 is less than 0.60 because it has fewer digits. Jessie says that 0.6 is greater than 0.60 . Who is right? Why? Show or explain your work.”

Indicator 2g

Materials support the intentional development of MP4: Model with mathematics; and MP5: Choose tools strategically, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for supporting the intentional development of MP4: Model with mathematics; and MP5: Use appropriate tools strategically, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards. The MPs are explicitly identified for teachers within the unit summary or specific lessons (Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, or Anchor Tasks).

MP4: Model with mathematics, is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students are given many opportunities to solve real-world problems, identify important quantities to make sense of relationships, and represent them mathematically. They model with math as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 17, Target Task, students “Solve two-step word problems involving multiplication, addition, and subtraction (MP.4).” The task states, “Solve. Show or explain your work. Jennifer has 256 beads. Stella has 3 times as many beads as Jennifer. Tiah has 104 more beads than Stella. How many beads does Tiah have?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 1, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students “Solve division word problems within 100 that involve a remainder, using an array, an area model, or a tape diagram to represent the problem (MP.4).” The problem states, “There are 13 students to be split among 4 teams. How many students will be on each team?” Guiding Questions include, “How could you represent this problem with an array? An area model? A tape diagram? A remainder is the number left over when one number is divided by another. What is the quotient in this problem? What is the remainder?”  

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 19, Anchor Task, Problem 1, students solve problems involving multiplication of fractions. Tips for Teachers include, “Today’s three-act task helps illustrate Mathematical Practice Standard 4, Model with mathematics. Students apply the mathematics they know to solve problems arising in everyday life. As students think about the situation in real life, they have to select the mathematical thinking that will help them solve the problem. This selection of a mathematical model allows students to think about which mathematics might be useful in the real-life situation that they face. Students identify the mathematical elements of the situation and decide which solution pathway is best for them to follow.”  Problem 1 states, “Act 1: Watch the following video: ‘How Much Sugar.’ How much sugar is in the entire pack of soda cans?” Guiding Questions include, “What do you notice? What do you wonder? Which of our noticings and wonderings is the question we most want the answer to? (The question you want to zero in on is stated in the task above.)  Make an estimate of the answer. What information do you need to figure out the answer?” 

MP5: Use appropriate tools strategically, is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students have multiple opportunities throughout the materials, with support of the teacher or during independent practice, to identify and use a variety of tools or strategies that support their understanding of grade level math. Examples include:

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 3, Anchor Tasks, Problem 2, students engage with MP5 “as they illustrate and explain the calculation by using physical or drawn models, they are using appropriate drawn tools strategically (MP.5) and attending to precision (MP.6) as they use base-ten units in the appropriate places (PARCC Model Content Frameworks, Math, Grades 3–11).” The problem states, “Solve. a. 32 ÷  4, b. 320 ÷  4, c. 3,200 ÷  4.” 

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 11, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students “Compare two fractions with the same numerators or denominators using visual models.” The problem states, “Below are measurements of ribbon in feet. For each pair of ribbons, determine which one is longer. Show or explain how you know. a. \frac{3}{4} ft. and \frac{1}{4} ft. b. \frac{5}{12} ft. and \frac{5}{6} ft.” Guiding Questions include, “What’s more, 1 apple or 3 apples? How is this related to the idea of comparing 1 fourth and 3 fourths? How can you represent both measurements in Part (a) with a tape diagram? With a number line? How can you use those representations to determine which measurement is larger? Record the comparison with the correct symbol. (Write \frac{3}{4}>\frac{1}{4}.) What’s more, 1 dollar or 1 cent? What about 5 dollars or 5 cents? What’s more, 1 sixth or 1 twelfth? How is this related to the idea of comparing 5 twelfths with 5 sixths? How can you represent both measurements in Part (b) with a tape diagram? With a number line? How can you use those representations to determine which measurement is larger? Write a number sentence to record this comparison. (Write \frac{5}{12}<\frac{5}{6}.)  How would our answer to (a) change if the first ribbon were \frac{3}{4} inch? What about our answer to (b) if the second ribbon were \frac{5}{6} inch?”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 1, Problem Set, Problem 3, students draw line segments with self-selected tools, “The students in Ms. Sun’s class were drawing geometric figures. First she asked them to draw some points, and then she asked them to draw all the line segments they could that join two of their points. a. Joni drew 4 points and then drew 4 line segments between them: [drawing provided] Are there other line segments that Joni could have drawn?” 

Indicator 2h

Materials attend to the intentional development of MP6: Attend to precision; and attend to the specialized language of mathematics for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for supporting the intentional development of MP6: Attend to precision; and attend to the specialized language of mathematics, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards. MP6 is explicitly identified for teachers within the unit summary or specific lessons (criteria for success, tips for teachers, or anchor problem notes), and students engage with the full intent of the MP through a variety of lesson problems and assessment items.

Students attend to precision in connection to grade-level content as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 11, Criteria For Success states, “Understand the advantages and disadvantages of rounding a value to various place values, including the precision of rounding a number to a smaller place value (MP.6) and ease of working/operating when rounding a number to a larger place value.” In Problem Set, Problem 8 states, “Look at Part (c) of #3-7. a. What do you notice about what 289,091 rounded to, depending on the place value? b. Which estimate is most precise? How do you know?”

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 16, Criteria for Success states, “Understand that when finding areas of rectangular regions answer will be in square units, and when finding the perimeter of a rectangular region, answers will be in linear units (MP.6).” In Homework, Problem 3, students understand that when finding areas of rectangular regions the answer will be in square units, and when finding the perimeter of a rectangular region, answers will be in linear units. The problem states, “The figure below represents a play space that Logan fenced in for his dog. Logan is getting a second dog and wants to increase the length of the play space by 3 feet and the width by 3 feet. What will be the difference in the area, in square feet, between the original play space and the new play space?”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 7, Criteria For Success states, “Understand that decimal comparisons are only valid when the two decimals refer to the same whole (MP.6).” In Problem Set, Problem 4 states, “Danielle says that 0.17 is greater than 0.2 because 17 is greater than 2. Identify the incorrect reasoning in Danielle’s statement. Explain how Danielle can correct her reasoning. Use >, <, or = to give a correct comparison between 0.17 and 0.2.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 2, Criteria for Success states, “Draw right, obtuse, and acute angles (MP.5, MP.6).” In Target Task, Problem 2, students attend to precision as they independently create a variety of angles, “Draw an additional example of each type of angle mentioned above. a. Right angle; b. Obtuse angle; c. Acute angle; d. Straight angle.”

Students have frequent opportunities to attend to the specialized language of math in connection to grade-level content as they work with support of the teacher and independently throughout the units. The “Tips for Teachers” sections provide teachers with an understanding of grade-specific language and how to stress the specialized language during the lesson. Examples include:

  • Each Unit Overview provides a link to a Fourth Grade Vocabulary Glossary. The glossary contains a chart with the columns “Word” and “Definition.” Under the Definition column, is the mathematical definition and an example. For example, for hundred thousand the definition reads, “Place value to the left of the ten thousands whose value is ten times as much as the ten thousands” and “Example - 100,000.”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 10, Tips for Teachers states, “The term “simplify”/ “simplification” is intentionally excluded from CCSS since “it is possible to over-emphasize the importance of simplifying fractions in this way. There is no mathematical reason why fractions must be written in simplified form, although it may be convenient to do so in some cases” (NF Progression, p. 6). It is important for students to understand the term at some point, but because the focus of this unit is purely on equivalent fractions rather than some of those fractions being ‘simpler’ than others, the term is excluded from the unit. Instead, the conversation centers on the number and sizes of the parts, in keeping with the language of the standard (4.NF.1). Students are prompted to find fractions in the largest possible terms so that they have practice doing so for when it makes sense to do so, but they aren’t expected to do so in every task in the Anchor Tasks and Problem Set.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 1, Tips For Teachers state, “While ‘mathematicians and scientists often read 0.5 aloud as “zero point five” or “point five,”’ refrain from using this language until you are sure students have a strong sense of place value with decimals (NF Progression, p. 15).”

Indicator 2i

Materials support the intentional development of MP7: Look for and make use of structure; and MP8: Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning, for students, in connection to the grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for supporting the intentional development of MP7: Look for and make use of structure; and MP8: Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning, for students, in connection to grade-level content standards, as expected by the mathematical practice standards. MPs are explicitly identified for teachers within the unit summary or specific lessons (criteria for success, tips for teachers, or anchor problem notes).

MP7: Look for and make use of structure, is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students have many opportunities throughout the units to look for, describe, and make use of patterns within problem-solving as they work with support of the teacher and independently. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 1, Criteria for Success states, “Notice patterns in the count sequence, such as the repeating sequence of ones digits, that the tens digit changes every ten numbers, and the hundreds digit changes every 100 numbers, etc. (MP.7).” Homework, Problem 8 states, “Find 503 in your 1,000 book. a. Which two tens is it between? b. What two hundreds is it between? c. What would you have to change to make its neighbor above it?”

  • In Unit 3: Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 14, Criteria For Success states, “Identify the rule of a growing number pattern (MP.7, MP.8).” Target Task states, “The first number in a pattern is 3. The pattern rule is to add 4. a. What is the seventh number in the pattern? 3, ___, ___, ___, ___, ___, ___ b. Explain why all of the terms in the pattern are odd.”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 2, Criteria for Success states, “1. Look for structure (MP.7) to find patterns in multiples of various factors, such as a. All multiples of 2 are even numbers (i.e., end in 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8); b. All multiples of 3 have digits that add up to 3, 6, or 9; c. All multiples of 5 end in 0 or 5; d. All multiples of 6 end in 0, 2, 4, 6, 8 (i.e., are even/divisible by 2) and have digits that add up to 3, 6, or 9 (i.e., are divisible by 3); e. All multiples of 9 have digits that add up to 9 (including adding the digits of subsequent sums together, e.g., 99 → 9 + 9 = 18 and 1 + 8 = 9); f. All multiples of 10 end in 0. 2. Make use of structure (MP.7) by using the divisibility rules stated above to determine whether a number larger than 100 is a multiple of 2, 3, 5, 6, 9, or 10.” In Problem Set, Problem 2 states, “a. List the first 10 multiples of three below. b. What do you notice about the sum of the digits in each multiple? c. Use your observation in Part (b) to determine whether 582 is a multiple of 3.” 

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 5, Criteria for Success states, “Understand the value of each digit in a multi-digit decimal to hundredths, using pictorial base ten blocks to help (MP.7).” Homework, Problem 1, students understand the value of each digit in a multi-digit decimal to hundredths, using pictorial base ten blocks to help. The problem states, “Represent the values on the number line and area model. Convert the fraction to a decimal or vice versa. a. 2\frac{35}{100}= ____.____.” An area model and number line are provided. 

MP8: Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning, is identified and connected to grade-level content, and there is intentional development of the MP to meet its full intent. Students have multiple opportunities throughout the materials, with support of the teacher or during independent practice, to use repeated reasoning in order to make generalizations and build a deeper understanding of grade level math concepts. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 4, Criteria for Success states, “Identify patterns in multiplication of 10, 100, and 1,000 by one- and two-digit numbers (MP.8).” Anchor Tasks, Problem 1, students identify patterns in multiplication of 10, 100, and 1,000 by one- and two-digit numbers. The problem states, “1. Solve. a. 3 × 1 = ____; b. 3 × 10 = ____; c. 3 × 100 = ____;  d. 3 × 1,000 = ____;  2. What do you notice about #1? What do you wonder?” Guiding Questions include, “How can you use repeated addition or skip-counting to solve? How can you use unit form to solve? For example, what is 3 times 1 one? 3 times 1 ten? 1 hundred? 1 thousand? How is 3 x 10 related to 3 x 100? How can you use 3 x 10 to solve 3 x 100? (It may help to write this as 3 × 100 = 3 × (10 × 10) = (3 × 10) × 10 = 30 × 10 = 300, using parentheses to facilitate the use of the associative property.) How can you use ‘times as many’ to describe these equations?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 3, Criteria for Success states, “Identify patterns in division of multiples of 10, 100, and 1,000 by single digits (MP.8).” In Homework, Problem 1, students identify patterns in division of multiples of 10, 100, and 1,000 by single digits. The problem states, “Find the quotient. Show or explain your work. a. 12 ÷ 3 = ___; b. 120 ÷ 3 =___; c. 1,200 ÷ 3 =___; d. How did the basic fact 12 ÷ 3 help you to solve Parts (b) and (c)?”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operation, Lesson 17, Criteria for Success states, “Generate a general method for multiplying a whole number by a non-unit fraction, i.e., n × $$\frac{a}{b}$$ = \frac{n×a}{b} (MP.8).” In Homework, Problem 4, students generate a general method for multiplying a whole number by a non-unit fraction. The problem states, “Paloma is working on multiplying fractions and whole numbers 3 × \frac{4}{5} = 3 × 4 × \frac{1}{5} = \frac{12}{5} Is her work reasonable? Why or why not?”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 6, Criteria for Success states, “Use these relationships to convert measurements from a larger customary weight unit to a smaller unit (MP.7, MP.8). Use these relationships to convert measurements from mixed customary weight units to a smaller unit (MP.7, MP.8).” In Homework, Problem 4, students use the relationships between the backpacks to convert measurements from a larger customary weight unit to a smaller unit. The problem states, “The total weight of Sarah’s and Amanda’s full backpacks is 27 pounds. Sarah’s backpack weighs 15 pounds and 9 ounces. How much does Amanda’s backpack weigh?”

Gateway Three

Usability

Partially Meets Expectations

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Gateway Three Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for Usability. The materials partially meet expectations for Criterion 1, Teacher Supports, meet expectations for Criterion 2, Assessment, and partially meet expectations for Criterion 3, Student Supports.

Criterion 3a - 3h

The program includes opportunities for teachers to effectively plan and utilize materials with integrity and to further develop their own understanding of the content.

8/9
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for Teacher Supports. The materials: provide teacher guidance with useful annotations and suggestions for enacting the materials, include standards correlation information that explains the role of the standards in the context of the overall series, provide explanations of the instructional approaches of the program and identification of the research-based strategies, and provide a comprehensive list of supplies needed to support instructional activities. The materials do not contain adult-level explanations and examples of the more complex grade-level concepts and concepts beyond the current grade so that teachers can improve their own knowledge of the subject.

Indicator 3a

Materials provide teacher guidance with useful annotations and suggestions for how to enact the student materials and ancillary materials, with specific attention to engaging students in order to guide their mathematical development.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing teacher guidance with useful annotations and suggestions for how to enact the student materials and ancillary materials, with specific attention to engaging students in order to guide their mathematical development.

Materials provide comprehensive guidance that will assist teachers in presenting the student and ancillary materials. Examples include:

  • In Teacher Tools, Math Teacher Tools, Preparing to Teach Fishtank Math, Preparing to Teach a Math Unit recommends seven steps for teachers to prepare to teach each unit as well as the questions teachers should ask themselves while preparing. For example step 1 states, “Read and annotate the Unit Summary-- Ask yourself: What content and strategies will students learn? What knowledge from previous grade levels will students bring to this unit? How does this unit connect to future units and/or grade levels?”

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Unit Summary provides an overview of content and expectations for the unit. Within Unit Prep, Intellectual Prep, there is Unit-Specific Intellectual Prep detailing the content for teachers. The materials state, “Read pp. 14–15 in Progressions for the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics Number and Operations in Base Ten, K-5 (starting at the section titled ‘Use place value understanding and properties of operations to perform multi-digit arithmetic’). Read the document ‘Situation Types for Operations in Word Problems’ for multiplication and division. Identify the word problem types of any applicable assessment questions. Read the following table that includes models used throughout the unit.” Additionally, the Unit Summary contains Essential Understandings. It states, “In an additive comparison, the underlying question is what amount would be added to one quantity in order to result in the other. In a multiplicative comparison, the underlying question is what factor would multiply one quantity in order to result in the other. One component of understanding general methods for multiplication is understanding how to compute products of one-digit numbers and multiples of 10, 100, and 1,000. Another part of understanding general base-ten methods for multi-digit multiplication is understanding the role played by the distributive property. Rounding numbers can help one to determine whether an answer is reasonable based on whether the estimate is close to the computed answer or not. Making sense of problems and persevering to solve them is an important practice when solving word problems. Keywords do not always indicate the correct operation.”  

Materials include sufficient and useful annotations and suggestions that are presented within the context of the specific learning objectives. Teacher Tools, Math Tools, Preparing to Teach Fishtank Math, Components of a Math Lesson states, “Each math lesson on Fishtank consists of seven key components: Objective, Standards, Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, Anchor Tasks/Problems, Problem Set, and Target Task. Several components focus specifically on the content of the lesson, such as the Standards, Anchor Tasks/Problems, and Target Task, while other components, like the Tips for Teachers, serve to ensure teachers have the support and knowledge they need to successfully implement the content.” Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 2, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 Notes provide teachers guidance about how to set students up to solve the problems. The materials state, “Students may write a multiplication sentence (3 × ___= 24 or 24 ÷ 3 = ___). Ensure they see these as equivalent. Further, push them to use a letter to represent the unknown to connect back to work in Unit 1. An example tape diagram is shown below.” 

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit, Division, Lesson 5, Tips for Teachers provide context about representations of problems using two-digit dividend division problems. The materials state, “Throughout this lesson, students may want to divide starting with the smallest place value. This strategy will work in this lesson, but students will see in Lesson 5 why starting with the largest place value first is the most effective way to divide. Therefore, model starting with the largest place value here, but don’t force students to do so. In Lesson 5, they will develop that understanding.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 4, Tips for Teachers include guidance for teachers to review key concepts about representing decimal place value. The materials state, “There are several ways to read decimals aloud. For example, 0.15 can be read as ‘1 tenth and 5 hundredths’ or ‘15 hundredths,’ just as 1,500 is sometimes read ‘15 hundred’ or ‘1 thousand, 5 hundred’ (NF Progression, p. 15). In your own language use, opt for the former way of saying a decimal, since this is more common and because reading each place value separately will become cumbersome (e.g., ‘4.583’ would be read as ‘four and 5 tenths 8 hundredths 3 thousandths’ rather than ‘four and 583 thousandths’). While ‘mathematicians and scientists often read 0.15 aloud as “zero point one five” or “point one five,”’ refrain from using this language until you are sure students have a strong sense of place value with decimals (NF Progression, p. 15).”

Indicator 3b

Materials contain adult-level explanations and examples of the more complex grade-level/course-level concepts and concepts beyond the current course so that teachers can improve their own knowledge of the subject.

1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for containing adult-level explanations and examples of the more complex grade-level concepts and concepts beyond the current course so that teachers can improve their own knowledge of the subject. 

While adult-level explanations of concepts beyond the grade are not present, Tips for Teachers, within some lessons, can support teachers to develop a deeper understanding of course concepts. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 13, Tips for Teachers, contain adult-level explanations of complex grade level concepts. “When discussing how to line up numbers in order to add or subtract them vertically, emphasize that units need to be lined up because one can only add or subtract like units (ones with ones and tens with tens) as opposed to saying that numbers need to be lined up from right to left. This is an important distinction since lining numbers up from right to left no longer works when students begin working with decimals (e.g., adding 6.4 and 2.08 would result in an incorrect sum if lined up from right to left).”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 5, Tips for Teachers, contain adult-level explanations of complex grade level concepts. “This lesson allows for flexible use of models, depending on what students have gravitated towards in previous lessons and units. Later in the unit, students will more explicitly be pointed towards the use of an area model, the partial quotients algorithm, and the standard algorithm. However, since students may find base ten block representations helpful as they develop an understanding of division, the models shown as examples here use this model. If students are comfortable with area models, you may choose to jump straight to that model. None of the Anchor Tasks, Problem Set tasks, or Homework tasks in this lesson ask students to use a particular strategy to allow for that flexible use of model. “Language plays an enormous role in thinking conceptually about the standard division algorithm. More adults are accustomed to the “goes into” language that is hard to let go. For the problem 583 ÷ 4, here is some suggested language: I want to share 5 hundreds, 8 tens, and 3 ones among these 4 sets. There are enough hundreds for each set to get 1 hundred. That leaves 1 hundred that I can’t share. I’ll trade the remaining hundred for 10 tens. That gives me a total of 18 tens. I can give each set 4 tens and have 2 tens left over. Two tens are not enough to go around the 4 sets. I can trade the 2 tens for 20 ones and put those with the 3 ones I already had. That makes a total of 23 ones. I can give 5 ones to each of the four sets. That leaves me with 3 ones as a remainder. In all, I gave each group 1 hundred, 4 tens, and 5 ones, with 3 ones left over.” (Van de Walle, Teaching Student-Centered Mathematics, Grades 3—5, vol. 2, p. 191). Throughout this lesson, students may want to divide starting with the smallest place value. This strategy will work in this lesson, but students will see in Lesson 6 why starting with the largest place value first is the most effective way to divide. Therefore, model starting with the largest place value here, but don’t force students to do so. In Lesson 6, they will develop that understanding.”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 5, Tips for Teachers, contain adult-level explanations of complex grade level concepts. “In Teaching Student-Centered Mathematics, 3-5, vol.2, John A. Van de Walle states, "The term ‘improper’ can be a source of confusion because it implies that this representation is not acceptable, which is false. Instead it is often the preferred representation in algebra. Avoid using this term and instead use ‘fraction’ or ‘fraction greater than one’” (p. 217). Thus, this lesson and all following avoid the use of the term with students.”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 2, Tips for Teachers, contain adult-level explanations of complex grade level concepts. “As the Geometric Measurement Progression states, “the Standards do not differentiate between weight and mass. Technically, mass is the amount of matter in an object. Weight is the force exerted on the body by gravity. On the earth’s surface, the distinction is not important (on the moon, an object would have the same mass, would weigh less due to the lower gravity)” (Progressions for the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics, K-5 Geometric Measurement, p. 2). Thus, the term “mass” is used through Lesson 2 in reference to metric mass measurement but the term “weight” is used throughout Lesson 6 in reference to customary weight measurement. Enforcing the correct usage with students isn’t necessary but, it could be discussed if a student raises the issue.”

Indicator 3c

Materials include standards correlation information that explains the role of the standards in the context of the overall series.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for including standards correlation information that explains the role of the standards in the context of the overall series.  

Correlation information is present for the mathematics standards addressed throughout the grade level/series and can be found in several places, including the course summary standards map, unit summary lesson map, and within each lesson. Examples include:

  • In 4th Grade Math, Standards Map includes a table with each grade-level unit in columns and aligned grade-level standards in the rows. Teachers can easily identify a unit when each grade-level standard will be addressed. 

  • In 4th Grade Math, Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson Map outlines lessons, aligned standards, and the objective for each lesson. This is present for all units and allows teachers to identify targeted standards for any lesson.

  • In Unit 7, Conversions, Lesson 7, the Core Standard is identified as 4.MD.A.1 and 4.MD.A.2. The Foundational Standard is identified as 3.MD.A.2 and 4.OA.A.2. Lessons contain a consistent structure that includes an Objective, Common Core Standards, Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, Anchor Tasks, Problem Set & Homework, Target Task, and Additional Practice. This provides an additional place to reference standards, and language of the standard, within each lesson.

Each Unit Summary includes an overview of content standards addressed within the unit as well as a narrative outlining relevant prior and future content connections for teachers. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Unit Summary includes an overview of how the math of this unit builds from previous work in math. The materials state, “Students understanding of the base ten system begins as early as Kindergarten, when students learn to decompose teen numbers as ten ones and some ones (K.NBT.1). This understanding continues to develop in Grade 1, when students learn that ten is a unit and therefore decompose teen numbers into one ten (as opposed to ten ones) and some ones and learn that the decade numbers can be referred to as some tens (1.NBT.2). Students also start to compare two-digit numbers (1.NBT.3) and add and subtract within 100 based on place value (1.NBT.4—6). In second grade, students generalize the place value system even further, understanding one hundred as a unit (2.NBT.1) and counting, reading, writing, comparing, adding, and subtracting numbers within 1,000 (2.NBT.2—9). In Grade 3, place value standards are additional cluster content, but they still spend time fluently adding and subtracting within 1,000 and rounding three-digit numbers to the nearest 10 and 100 (3.NBT.1—2).”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Unit Summary includes an overview of how the content in Grade 4 connects to mathematics students will learn in Grade 5 and the middle grades. The materials state, “As mentioned previously, the unit summarizes and applies much of the major work of the grade in the fresh context of measurement, serving as a nice culmination for the year. But, the unit not only looks back on the year in review, it also prepares students for work in future grades, including the very direct link to converting from smaller units to larger ones in Grade 5 (5.MD.1) and also to ratios and proportions in the middle grades (6.RP.1) as well as many other areas to come.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Unit Summary includes an overview of the Math Practices that are connected to the content in the unit. The materials state, “This unit allows for particular focus on MP.2, MP.5 and MP.6. For example, when students are “shown two sets of shapes and asked where a new shape belongs,” they are reasoning abstractly and quantitatively (MP.2) (G Progression, p. 16). Students also learn to use a new tool, the protractor, precisely, ensuring they line up the vertex and base correctly and read the angle measure carefully (MP.5, MP.6).”

Indicator 3d

Materials provide strategies for informing all stakeholders, including students, parents, or caregivers about the program and suggestions for how they can help support student progress and achievement.

Narrative Evidence Only
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not provide strategies for informing all stakeholders, including students, parents, or caregivers about the program and suggestions for how they can help support student progress and achievement. While curriculum resources support teachers with planning, instruction, and analysis of student progress, there are no specific resources for parents or caregivers.

Indicator 3e

Materials provide explanations of the instructional approaches of the program and identification of the research-based strategies.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing explanations of the instructional approaches of the program and identification of the research-based strategies. This information can be found within Our Approach and Math Teacher Tools. Examples where materials explain the instructional approaches of the program include:

  • In Fishtank Mathematics, Our Approach, Guiding Principles include the mission of the program as well as a description of the core beliefs. The materials state, “Content-Rich Tasks, Practice and Feedback, Productive Struggle, Procedural Fluency Combined with Conceptual Understanding, and Communicating Mathematical Understanding.” Productive Struggle states, “We believe that students develop essential strategies for tackling complex problems, and build non-cognitive skills such as perseverance and resilience, through productive struggle. Productive struggle happens when students are asked to use multiple familiar concepts and procedures in unfamiliar applications, and the process for solving problems is not immediately apparent. Productive struggle can occur, and should occur, in multiple settings: whole class, peer-to-peer, and individual practice. Through instruction and high-quality tasks, students can develop a toolbox of strategies, such as annotating and drawing diagrams, to understand and attack complex problems. Through discussion, evaluation, and revision of problem-solving strategies and processes, students build interest, comfort, and confidence in mathematics.”

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Preparing To Teach Fishtank Math, Understanding the Components of a Fishtank Math Lesson helps to outline the purpose for each lesson component. The materials state, “Each Fishtank math lesson consists of seven key components, such as the Objective, Standards, Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, Anchor Tasks/Problems, Problem Set, the Target Task, among others. Some of these connect directly to the content of the lesson, while others, such as Tips for Teachers, serve to ensure teachers have the support and knowledge they need to successfully implement the content.” 

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Academic Discourse, Overview outlines the role discourse plays within Fishtank Math. The materials state, “Academic discourse is a key component of our mathematics curriculum. Academic discourse refers to any discussion or dialogue about an academic subject matter. During effective academic discourse, students are engaging in high-quality, productive, and authentic conversations with each other (not just the teacher) in order to build or clarify understanding of a topic.” Additional documents are provided titled, “Preparing for Academic Discourse, Tiers of Academic Discourse, and Strategies to Support Academic Discourse.” These guides further explain what a teacher can do to help students learn and communicate mathematical understanding through academic discourse.

While there are many research-based strategies cited and described within the Math Teacher Tools, they are not consistently referenced for teachers within specific lessons. Examples where materials include and describe research-based strategies:

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Procedural Skill and Fluency, Fluency Expectations by Grade states, “The language of the standards explicitly states where fluency is expected. The list below outlines these standards with the full standard language. In addition to the fluency standards, Model Content Frameworks, Mathematics Grades 3-11 from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) identify other standards that represent culminating masteries where attaining a level of fluency is important. These standards are also included below where applicable. 4th Grade, 4.NBT.4, 4.NBT.2, 4.NBT.3, 4.NBT.5, 4.NBT.6, 4.NF.1, 4.NF.2, 4.NF.3c, 4.NF.4b, 4.NF.5, 4.NF.6, 4.NF.7, and 4.MD.1, among others.”

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Academic Discourse, Tiers of Academic Discourse, Overview states, “These components are inspired by the book Classroom Discussions in Math: A Teacher’s Guide for Using Talk Moves to Support the Common Core and More. (Chapin, Suzanne H., Catherine O’Connor, and Nancy Canavan Anderson. Classroom Discussions in Math: A Teacher’s Guide for Using Talk Moves to Support the Common Core and More, 3rd edition. Math Solutions, 2013.)”

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Supporting English Learners, Scaffolds for English Learners, Overview states, “Scaffold categories and scaffolds adapted from ‘Essential Actions: A Handbook for Implementing WIDA’s Framework for English Language Development Standards,’ by Margo Gottlieb. © 2013 Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System, on behalf of the WIDA Consortium, p. 50. https://wida.wisc.edu/sites/default/files/resource/Essential-Actions-Handbook.pdf

  • In Math Teacher Tools, Assessments, Overview, Works Cited lists, “Wiliam, Dylan. 2011. Embedded formative assessment.” and “Principles to Action: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All. (2013). National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, p. 98.”

Indicator 3f

Materials provide a comprehensive list of supplies needed to support instructional activities.

1/1
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing a comprehensive list of supplies needed to support instructional activities. The 4th Grade Course Summary, Course Material Overview, Course Material List 4th Grade Mathematics states, “The list below includes the materials used in the 4th grade Fishtank Math course. The quantities reflect the approximate amount of each material that is needed for one class. For more detailed information about the materials, such as any specifications around sizes or colors, etc., refer toeach specific unit.” The materials include information about supplies needed to support the instructional activities. Examples include:

  • Base ten blocks are used in Units 1, 2, 3, and 6, maximum of 18 thousands, 40 hundreds, 50 tens, and 30 ones per individual, pair, or group of students. In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 2, students use base ten blocks to write and understand place value. The materials state, “You will need base ten blocks (as many thousands as you can find and about 15 each of hundreds, tens, and ones) for this task.”

  • A ten-sided die, a spinner of digits 0-9, or digit cards are used in Unit 1, one per teacher.

  • Six-sided dice are used in Unit 2, one or two per student.  

  • Rulers (with eighth-inch measurements and ideally with a 0 mark not flush with edge) are used in Units 5 and 8, one per student. 

  • Paper circles, such as parchment paper baking circles, are used in Unit 8, five per student. 

  • Buttons or other small objects of various diameters are used Unit 5, twenty per pair or group of students.

  • A balance scale is used in Unit 7, one per teacher. In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Lesson 6, students express customary weight measurements in terms of a smaller unit. The materials state, “Teachers will need a balance scale, a one-pound weight, and 16 one-ounce weights for this task. (optional: these materials may be helpful for students to generate benchmarks that have that approximate weight.”

Indicator 3g

This is not an assessed indicator in Mathematics.

Indicator 3h

This is not an assessed indicator in Mathematics.

Criterion 3i - 3l

The program includes a system of assessments identifying how materials provide tools, guidance, and support for teachers to collect, interpret, and act on data about student progress towards the standards.

9/10
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for Assessment. The materials include an assessment system that provides multiple opportunities throughout the grade to determine students' learning and sufficient guidance to teachers for interpreting student performance and suggestions for follow-up, and the materials provide assessments that include opportunities for students to demonstrate the full intent of grade-level standards and practices. The materials partially include assessment information in the materials to indicate which standards are assessed.

Indicator 3i

Assessment information is included in the materials to indicate which standards are assessed.

1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for having assessment information included in the materials to indicate which standards and mathematical practices are assessed. 

While Pre-, Mid-, and Post-Unit Assessments within the program consistently and accurately reference grade-level content standards in Answer Keys or Assessment Analysis, Standards for Mathematical Practice are not identified. Post-Unit Assessment examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Expanded Assessment Package, Post-Unit Assessment Analysis denotes content standards addressed for each problem. Problem 7 is aligned to 4.NBT.1 and states, “The number 234 is multiplied by 10. Which statement is true about the digit 2 in the product? A. The value of the digit 2 in the product is 20. B. The value of the digit 2 in the product is 200. C. The value of the digit 2 in the product is 2,000. D. The value of the digit in the product is 20,000.”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Unit Summary, Unit Assessment, Answer Key denotes standards addressed for each question. Problem 1 is aligned to 4.NF.1 and states, “Which fractions are equivalent to \frac{2}{4}? Select the three correct answers. A. \frac{4}{6}, B. \frac{1}{2}, C. \frac{8}{12}, D. \frac{5}{10}, E. \frac{4}{8}.” 

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Unit Assessment Answer Key includes a constructed response and 2-point rubric with the aligned grade-level standard. Problem 4 is aligned to 4.MD.2 and states, “Mason ran for an hour and 15 minutes on Monday, 55 minutes on Tuesday, and 40 minutes on Wednesday. If Mason ran for 4 hours total Monday through Thursday, how long did he run for on Thursday? Show or explain your work.”

Indicator 3j

Assessment system provides multiple opportunities throughout the grade, course, and/or series to determine students' learning and sufficient guidance to teachers for interpreting student performance and suggestions for follow-up.

4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for including an assessment system that provides multiple opportunities throughout the grade, course, and/or series to determine students’ learning and sufficient guidance to teachers for interpreting student performance and suggestions for follow-up. 

Each lesson provides a Target Task with a Mastery Response. According to the Math Teacher Tools, Assessment Overview states, “Target Tasks offer opportunities for teachers to gather information about what students know and don’t know while they are still engaged in the content of the unit.” Each Pre-Unit Assessment provides an answer key and guide with a potential course of action to support teacher response to data. Each Mid-Unit Assessment provides an answer key and a 2-, 3-, or 4-point rubric. Each Post-Unit Assessment Analysis provides an answer key, potential rationales for incorrect answers, and a commentary to support analysis of student thinking. According to Math Teacher Tools, Assessment Resource Collection,“commentaries on each problem include clarity around student expectations, things to look for in student work, and examples of related problems elsewhere on the post-unit assessment to look at simultaneously.” Examples from the assessment system include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Mid-Unit Assessment, Problem 5 states, “Compute 7,234 × 5. Explain how you know your answer is reasonable.” The answer key states, “36,170 and explanations may vary, e.g., ‘I know it’s reasonable because 7,234 ≈ 7,000 and 7,000 × 5 = 35,000, which is very close to my answer of 36,170.’” The 2-Point Scoring Rubric states, “2 points: Students response demonstrates an exemplary understanding of the concepts in the task. The student correctly and completely answers all aspects of the prompt. 1 point: Student response demonstrates a fair understanding of the concepts in the task. The student arrived at a partially acceptable conclusion, showing mixed evidence of understanding of the task, with some aspects of the task completed correctly, while others not. 0 points: Student response contains insufficient evidence of an understanding of the concepts in the task. Work may be incorrect, unrelated, illogical, or a correct solution obtained by chance.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Post Assessment Assessment Key, Question 5b, Correct Answer and Scoring Guidance states, “Valid explanation, e.g., ‘Christy found the correct total distance of her runs, but her comparison is wrong. 0.5 is \frac{5}{10} which equals \frac{50}{100} so she should compare 47 to 50, not 5. 50 is greater than 47, so \frac{5}{10} > \frac{47}{100} .’ OR ‘Christy's distance \frac{47}{100}=0.47 and Alex ran 0.5 mile, so she should compare 0.5 to 0.47. The 5 in tenths place in 0.5 has a greater value than the 4 in the tenths place in 0.47.’” The 2-point Scoring Rubric states, “2 points - Student response demonstrates an exemplary understanding of the concepts in the task. The student correctly and completely answers all aspects of the prompt. 1 point - Student response demonstrates a fair understanding of the concepts in the task. The student arrived at a partially acceptable conclusion, showing mixed evidence of understanding of the task, with some aspects of the task completed correctly, while others not. 0 points - Student response contains insufficient evidence of an understanding of the concepts in the task. Work may be incorrect, unrelated, illogical, or a correct solution obtained by chance.”

  • In Unit 7, Lesson 8, Target Task, Problem 2 states, “Jacob needs to do his chores. It takes Jacob an hour and 45 minutes to mow the lawn and 20 minutes to clean his room. If he starts his chores at 2:00 pm, what time will he finish?” The Mastery Response includes, “1 hr 45 min = 105 min. 105 min. + 20 min. = 125 min.” A number line with marks at 2pm, 3pm, and 4pm is drawn depicting the solution at 4:05 pm.  

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Pre-Unit Assessment, Problem 3 states, “Draw a rectangle. Explain how you know the shape you drew is a rectangle. Understanding categories and attributes of shapes (3.G.A.1). In #2, students are asked to identify a quadrilateral that is not a trapezoid. This requires that students “have built a firm foundation of several shape categories, [which] can be the raw material for thinking about the relationships between classes. For example, students can form larger, superordinate, categories, such as the class of all the shapes with four sides, or quadrilaterals, and recognize that it includes other categories, such as squares, rectangles, rhombuses, parallelograms, and trapezoids. They also recognize that there are quadrilaterals that are not in any of those subcategories (G Progressions, P.13). In #3, students are asked to draw a rectangle and describe how they know it is a rectangle. Students will rely on the understanding demonstrated in these two problems to classify shapes by properties of their lines as it relates to angle measure, they will classify shapes based on their presence or absences of these types of lines. Potential Course of Action - If needed, this concept should be reviewed before students analyze and classify shapes starting in Lesson 14. For example, include tasks similar to #2 above as a warmup to Lesson 14 and/or 16. If students struggled with #3, include tasks similar to it as a warmup to Lesson 15 and/ or 17. Find problems and other resources in the Fishtank lessons: Grade 3 Unit 5 Lesson 11-15.”

Indicator 3k

Assessments include opportunities for students to demonstrate the full intent of grade-level/course-level standards and practices across the series.

4/4
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing assessments that include opportunities for students to demonstrate the full intent of grade-level standards and practices across the series.

The Expanded Assessment Package includes the Pre-Unit, Mid-Unit, and Post-Unit Assessments. While content standards are consistently identified for teachers within Answer Keys for each assessment, practice standards are not identified for teachers or students. Pre-Unit items may be aligned to standards from previous grades. Mid-Unit and Post-Unit Assessments regularly demonstrate the full intent of grade-level content and practice standards through a variety of item types, including multiple choice, short answer, and constructed response. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Mid-Unit Assessment, Problems 1 and 4, and Post-Unit Assessment, Problems 3 and 5 develop the full intent of standard 4.OA.1 (Interpret a multiplication equation as a comparison. Represent verbal statements of multiplicative comparisons as multiplication equations). Problem 1 states, “Which of the following statements can be represented by the equation 19×8=152? Select the two correct statements. A. 152 is 19 times as much as 8; B. 152 is 8 more than 19; C. 152 multiplied by 8 is the same as 19; D. 152 is 19 more than 8; E. 152 equals 8 times as many as 19; F. 152 added to 8 is 19.”  Problem 4 states, “A skyscraper is 27 stories tall. A house is 3 stories tall. Which equation could be used to find how many times higher the skyscraper is than the house? A. 3 × 27 = ___; B. 3 × ___ = 27; C. 3 + 27 = ___; D. 3 + ___ = 27.” Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 5 states, “Nathan sold n tickets for a school play. Joe also sold tickets for the school play. The number of tickets Joe sold, j, is shown by the equation below. 2×n = j. Which statement is true about selling tickets to the school play? A. Joe sold two more tickets than Nathan sold; B. Joe sold two fewer tickets than Nathan sold; C. Joe sold half as many tickets as Nathan sold; D. Joe sold twice as many tickets as Nathan sold.” Problem 3 states, “Steph has 40 rubber bands. She has 5 times as many rubber bands as Jake has. Which equation shows how to find the number of rubber bands Jake has? A. 40 + 5 = 45; B. 40 – 5 = 35; C. 40 × 5 = 200; D. 40 ÷ 5 = 8.” 

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Post-Unit Assessment, Problem 8, supports the full development of MP2 (Reason abstractly and quantitatively, as students solve problems involving addition, subtraction, and multiplication of fractions). The materials state, “Omari wants to make fruit smoothies. The directions to make one smoothie include mixing \frac{4}{8} cup of yogurt and 1 cup of ice with the amounts of each fruit shown. \frac{5}{8} cup of banana slices, \frac{2}{8} cup of blueberries. Part A - Omari wants to make 6 smoothies. How many total cups of blueberries and banana slices will she use to make the 6 drinks? Show your work or explain your answer. Part B- Next Omari will add the yogurt and ice. How many total cups of yogurt and ice will she need to make the 6 smoothies? Show your work or explain your answer.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Post-Unit Assessment, Problems 5 and 8 support the full development of MP3 (Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others, as students work with decimal fractions). Problem 5 states, “A. Alex ran 0.5 mile. What number should replace the ? to make a fraction equivalent to 0.5? \frac{?}{10}Write your answer below. B. Christy ran \frac{4}{10}mile on Monday and \frac{7}{100} mile on Tuesday. She said that she ran a total of \frac{47}{100} mile. Christy told Alex that she ran a greater distance than he ran, because 47 is more than 5. Identify the incorrect reasoning in Christy’s statement. Explain how Christy can correct her reasoning. Use >, <, or = to give a correct comparison between the distances that Alex and Christy ran.” Problem 8 states, “Jessica shades two grids that each equal one whole to represent and compare the fractions \frac{3}{10} and \frac{29}{100}. Part A. From the list below, select the decimal that represents \frac{3}{10} and the decimal that represents \frac{29}{100}and use them to create a true comparison. Answer Choices: 0.03; 0.3; 3.1; 0.29; 0.92; 2.9.  ___ > ___ Part B. Jessica says that \frac{3}{10}+ \frac{29}{100} = $$\frac{32}{100}$$ because 3 + 29 = 32 and there are 100 squares in each of the grids. Explain how you know Jessica is incorrect by using the grids or the decimal inequality you created. Then find the correct sum.”

  • In Unit 7, Unit Conversions, Mid-Unit Assessment Problems 2 and 4, and Post-Unit Assessment Problem 4 develop the full intent of 4.MD.2 (Use the four operations to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects, and money, including problems involving simple fractions or decimals, and problems that require expressing measurements given in a larger unit in terms of a smaller unit). Mid-Unit Assessment, Problem 2 states, “Kristy buys 3 pounds of chicken at the grocery store. She wants to split the chicken into four servings. How much chicken, in ounces, will each of Kristy’s servings be?” Problem 4 states, “Fernando has two bunches of string that are each 18 meters long. He uses 25 meters and 70 cm to make some bracelets. How much string, in millimeters, does Fernando have left?” Post- Unit Assessment, Problem 2 states, “A pitcher contains 2 liters of juice. A glass is filled with 180 milliliters of juice from the pitcher. How many milliliters of juice are left in the pitcher after filling the glass? A. 20 mL; B. 90 mL; C. 178 mL; D. 1,820 mL.” Problem 4 states, “Mason ran for an hour and 15 minutes on Monday, 55 minutes on Tuesday, and 40 minutes on Wednesday. If Mason ran for 4 hours total Monday through Thursday, how long did he run for on Thursday? Show or explain your work.”

Indicator 3l

Assessments offer accommodations that allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills without changing the content of the assessment.

Narrative Evidence Only
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not provide assessments which offer accommodations that allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills without changing the content of the assessment.

According to Math Teacher Tools, Assessment Resource Collection, “Each post-unit assessment includes approximately 6-12 problems for Grades 3-5 and 10-16 problems for Grades 6-8. It is recommended that teachers administer the post-unit assessment soon, if not immediately, after completion of the unit. The assessment is likely to take a full class period.” While all students take the assessment, there are no recommendations for potential student accommodations. 

Math Teacher Tools contain extensive information about strategies to utilize with sections, “Special Populations” and “Supporting English Learners.” One of many strategies includes, “Provide a prompt for students to respond to: Offering a scaffolded starting point for students to explain their thinking can be greatly beneficial to students who struggle in this area. This might look like providing sentence stems.”  

Additionally, in Teacher Tools, Math, Special Populations, Strategies For Supporting Special Populations, Memory, Lesson Level Adjustments states, “Provide tools: Consider allowing the use of tools like multiplication charts and calculators when appropriate. This would be especially appropriate if the skill to be introduced that day is not directly about assessing students’ understanding of math facts/arithmetic but this skill is an underlying skill preventing them from being successful that day.” This type of guidance is absent from actual assessments.

Criterion 3m - 3v

The program includes materials designed for each child’s regular and active participation in grade-level/grade-band/series content.

6/8
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for Student Supports. The materials provide extensions and/or opportunities for students to engage with grade-level mathematics at higher levels of complexity and manipulatives, both virtual and physical, that are accurate representations of the mathematical objects they represent and, when appropriate, are connected to written methods. The materials partially provide strategies and supports for students in special populations to support their regular and active participation in learning grade-level mathematics, and the materials partially provide strategies and supports for students who read, write, and/or speak in a language other than English to regularly participate in learning grade-level mathematics.

Indicator 3m

Materials provide strategies and supports for students in special populations to support their regular and active participation in learning grade-level/series mathematics.

1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for providing strategies and supports for students in special populations to support their regular and active participation in learning grade-level mathematics. There are general strategies and supports included for teachers, but regular and active participation of special populations is not enhanced with specific recommendations linked to daily learning objectives, standards, and/or tasks within grade-level lessons.

Within Math Teacher Tools, there is a Special Populations folder that includes resources to support teachers. According to the materials, “In this Teacher Tool, we aim to provide teachers with resources to 1) broaden their own understanding of learning disabilities related to areas of cognitive functioning, 2) reflect on how the content or demands of a unit or lesson may require modifications or accommodations, and 3) identify and incorporate specific strategies meant to support students with learning disabilities.” There are many suggestions for supporting special populations within three categories in the Math Teacher Tools, “Areas of Cognitive Functioning, Protocols for Planning for Special Populations, and Strategies for Supporting Special Populations.'' For example, in Strategies for Supporting Special Populations, Conceptual Processing, Lesson Level Adjustments states, “Use manipulatives: Incorporate opportunities to use manipulatives that illuminate mathematical concepts in addition to those already included in the curriculum. Some excellent options that can be applied to elementary and middle/high school include base ten blocks, two-color counters, unit squares and unit cubes (such as centimeter cubes), fraction strips/tiles, and algebra tiles. With this strategy, ensure your manipulatives highlight the key concept and eliminate all other distractions. When introducing manipulatives, be sure to model how to use the materials correctly, what each represents, etc.”

Indicator 3n

Materials provide extensions and/or opportunities for students to engage with grade-level/course-level mathematics at higher levels of complexity.

2/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing extensions and/or opportunities for students to engage with grade-level mathematics at higher levels of complexity.

There are no instances within the materials when advanced students have more assignments than their classmates, and there are opportunities where students can investigate grade-level mathematics at a higher level of complexity. Often, “Challenge” is written within a Problem Set or Anchor Task Guidance/Notes to identify these extensions. Examples include:

  • In Unit 2, Multi-Digit Multiplication, Lesson 3, Homework, Problem 7 states, “CHALLENGE: Brown Squirrels can carry 2 acorns at a time. Gray Squirrels can carry 3 acorns at a time. Black Squirrels can carry 5 acorns at a time. Suppose the three squirrels all wanted to store acorns for the winter. Depending on how motivated each squirrel was, they would end up with different amounts. For instance suppose the Brown Squirrel took 4 trips, the Gray Squirrel took 2 trips and the Black Squirrel took 2 trips. The Brown Squirrel would end up with 8 acorns, the Gray Squirrel would have 6 acorns and the Black Squirrel would have 10. Between them they took every one of the 24 acorns. a. How many different ways could the three Squirrels divide up the 24 acorns and not leave any left over? Each Squirrel must carry his maximum load on each trip b. How do you know that you have found all of the ways?”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 11, Problem Set Problem 6b states, “CHALLENGE: Use Melissa’s strategy to compare \frac{24}{7} and \frac{31}{9}. Explain which fraction you chose for comparison and why.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 11, Tips For Teachers state, “This lesson is optional since it is not an explicit part of the standards for students to add decimals together. However, because this is simply a combination of skills explicitly outlined in the standards (namely, converting between fraction and decimal form (4.NF.6) as well as adding decimal fractions together (4.NF.5)) and because it will aid students’ work with solving problems involving money (4.MD.2), it is included here. It is at your discretion to keep or skip.”

Indicator 3o

Materials provide varied approaches to learning tasks over time and variety in how students are expected to demonstrate their learning with opportunities for students to monitor their learning.

Narrative Evidence Only
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 provide varied approaches to learning tasks over time and variety in how students are expected to demonstrate their learning with opportunities for students to monitor their learning.

Students engage with problem-solving in a variety of ways within the Anchor Problems, Problem Sets, and Target Tasks and Academic Discourse is a key component for the program. According to Math Teacher Tools, “Academic discourse is necessary for students to develop the critical thinking skills needed to construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning and ideas of others (Standard for Mathematical Practice 3). Academic discourse pushes students toward deeper understanding of concepts and ideas, encourages logical reasoning and thinking, and requires students to reflect on their own thinking and understanding. It is also vital for developing academic language, vocabulary, and oral language and communication skills.” Examples of varied approaches include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 4, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 states, “Look at your paper base ten blocks. The ones piece is the smallest square. Then tens piece is a 10 x 1 strip. The hundreds piece is the larger 10 x 10 square. a. Use the paper base ten blocks to construct 1,000. Use tape as needed. b. Use the paper base ten blocks to construct 10,000. Use tape as needed. c. What comes next? What shape will it be?” Guiding Questions include, “Before making 1,000, what do you expect it to look like? Before making 10,000, what do you expect it to look like? What comes next? What shape will it be? How much larger than 10,000 will the next value be?”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 8, Anchor Task, Problem 1 states, “Andre calculated 796÷6 in a different way, as shown below.” Guiding Question states, “The way Andre recorded his partial quotients is usually referred to as the partial quotients algorithm. What are the advantages and disadvantages of recording the partial quotients in this way?”

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 5, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 states, “Would you rather have the leftover king-sized candy bar in Scenario A or Scenario B? The original candy bars were the same size.” Guiding Questions include, “Would you rather have the candy bar in Scenario A? Would you rather have the candy bar in Scenario B? Why? Does anyone not care which candy bar they get? Why?”

Each unit contains a Self-Assessment for students to monitor their own progress and reflect on what they have learned throughout a unit. Each self-reflection builds metacognitive skills as “students assess their own understanding of the skill mentioned in each statement on a scale from 1 to 5. Then, based on those responses, they describe the areas in which they feel most confident, the least confident, and the tools and resources they can use to improve in those areas of least confidence.” For example: 

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Unit Summary, Student Self-Assessment provides students with the “I Can” statements that relates to the Common Core State Standards and a response scale of 1-Not Yet, 2, 3-Sometimes, 4, 5-All the Time. The materials state, “I can solve world problems involving money. (4.MD.A.2) I can add fractions with denominators of 10 and 100. (4.NF.C.5) I can create equivalent fractions whose denominators are 10 and 100. (4.NF.C.5) I can create a fraction with a denominator of 10 or 100 as a decimal. (4.NF.C.6) I can compare two decimals to the hundredths place. (4.NF.C.7) I can use comparison symbols (<, >, =) when comparing two decimals. (4.NF.C.7) I can prove my decimal comparisons using visual models. (4.NF.C.7) Reflection: I feel most confident in my ability to: I feel least confident in my ability to: Things I can do to improve in areas where I feel less confident include:.”

Indicator 3p

Materials provide opportunities for teachers to use a variety of grouping strategies.

Narrative Evidence Only
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 provide some opportunities for teachers to use a variety of grouping strategies.

While suggested grouping strategies within lessons are not consistently present or specific to the needs of particular students, there is some general grouping guidance within Fluency Activities. The Procedural Skill and Fluency, Fluency Activities state, “The fluency activities are designed to be facilitated as a whole class, though suggestions for how to make each activity adaptable for centers, independent or partner work, and/or asynchronous practice are included in their descriptions.” Examples include:

  • In Unit 4, Fraction Equivalence and Ordering, Lesson 1, Fluency Activities, Factor Game states, “In this fluency activity, students identify all of the factors of a number chosen by the opposing player and count those factors towards their total in hopes of winning. This fluency activity should be played in partners.”  

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fraction, Lesson 3, Fluency Activities, Choral Counting states, “In this fluency activity, students count together to notice number relationships and patterns. This fluency activity should be completed as a whole class or in a small group with a teacher.”

  • In Unit 8, Shape and Angles, Lesson 3, Fluency Activities, Geometry Taboo states, “In this fluency activity, students describe geometric terms to their teammates without using any of the ‘taboo’ terms in their description. This fluency activity should be played as a 2-team/person game.”  

Indicator 3q

Materials provide strategies and supports for students who read, write, and/or speak in a language other than English to regularly participate in learning grade-level mathematics.

1/2
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Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 partially meet expectations for providing strategies and supports for students who read, write, and/or speak in a language other than English to regularly participate in learning grade-level mathematics.

While there are resources within Math Teacher Tools, Supporting English Learners, that provide teachers with strategies and supports to help English Learners meet grade-level mathematics, these strategies and supports are not consistently embedded within lessons. The materials state, “Our core content provides a solid foundation for prompting English language development, but English learners need additional scaffolds and supports in order to develop English proficiency as they build their content knowledge. In this resource we have outlined the process our teachers use to internalize units and lessons to support the needs of English learners, as well as three major strategies that can help support English learners in all classrooms (scaffolds, oral language protocols, and graphic organizers). We have also included suggestions for how to use these strategies to provide both light and heavy support to English learners. We believe the decision of which supports are needed is best made by teachers, who know their students English proficiency levels best. Since each state uses different scales of measurement to determine students’ level of language proficiency, teachers should refer to these scales to determine if a student needs light or heavy support. For example, at Match we use the WIDA ELD levels; students who are levels 3-6 most often benefit from light supports, while students who are levels 1-3 benefit from heavy support.” Regular and active participation of students who read, write, and/or speak in a language other than English is not consistently supported because specific recommendations are not connected to daily learning objectives, standards, and/or tasks within grade-level lessons. Examples of strategies from Math Teacher Tools include:

  • In Teacher Tools, Supporting English Learners, Scaffolds for English Learners Overview states, “English learners should be interacting with the same complex tasks as the rest of the class. The job of the teacher is to ensure that the proper scaffolds are in place to make sure that English learners can access the complex tasks. Scaffolds should provide additional supports while maintaining the rigor of the core task, not simplify or modify the core task. Scaffolds should be determined by the student’s English Language level and the task. We recommend the following types of scaffolds; sensory, graphic, interactive, and noticing cognates  to help support English learners.  For example, a sensory scaffold may be Videos, Films and Audio. For lighter EL support: Show a short clip of an idea or concept to preview background information necessary to access a task. (For example, prior to learning about probability simulations, watch examples of simulations in action.) For heavier EL support: Show a short clip of an idea or concept to pre-teach key vocabulary prior to teaching a lesson. Video could be English or students’ home language.”

  • In Teacher Tools, Math, Supporting English Learners, Oral Language Protocols, “There are adjusting oral language protocols for both light English Learner support and heavy English Learner support. For the light English Learner support: Provide sentence frames for students to use. Include sentence frames that require students to use a variety of sentence structures. Provide lists of key academic vocabulary to use when discussing a particular topic. Introduce and preview vocabulary words using the 7-step lesson sequence. Include visuals and gestures with all vocabulary words. Assign specific group roles to ensure equitable participation (timekeeper, notetaker, facilitator, etc.). To provide heavy English Learner support: Provide sentence frames for students to use. Sentence frames may be a variety of sentence structures. Strategically group students with others who speak the same home language. Allow students to complete the assignment in either English or in their home language. Provide students with answers (either on the back of the task, or in another location in the room) to allow partners to check if their partner has the correct answer. Provide more think time to allow students to build an effective argument. For oral turn and talk questions, give students a written version of the question to reference.” There are suggested oral language protocols that include: Turn and Talk, Simultaneous Round Table, Rally Coach, Talking Chips, Numbered Heads Together, and Take a Stand.

  • In Teacher Tools, Supporting English Learners, Planning for English Learners, Overview states, “Teachers need a deep understanding of the language and content demands and goals of a unit in order to create a strategic plan for how to support students, especially English learners, over the course of the unit. We encourage all teachers working with English learners to use the following process to prepare to teach each unit. We acknowledge that this work takes time, but we believe it is necessary in order to best meet the diverse needs of students. The steps for INTELLECTUALLY PREPARING A UNIT are Step One: Unpack the Unit, Step Two: Set a Vision for Mastery, Step Three: Plan for Assessment and Mastery, Step Four: Take Ownership.We believe that teacher intellectual preparation, specifically internalizing daily lesson plans, is a key component of student learning and growth. Teachers need to deeply know the content and create a plan for how to support students, especially English learners, to ensure mastery. Teachers know the needs of the students in their classroom better than anyone else, therefore, they should also make decisions about where to scaffold or include additional supports for English learners. We encourage all teachers working with English learners to use the following process to prepare to teach a lesson. Step One: Determine a Vision for Mastery and Step Two: Build the Lesson.”

Indicator 3r

Materials provide a balance of images or information about people, representing various demographic and physical characteristics.

Narrative Evidence Only
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 provide a balance of images or information about people, representing various demographic and physical characteristics. 

While images are not used within materials, there are names that could represent a variety of cultures and problems include reference to specific roles, instead of pronouns that reference a specific gender identity. Lessons also include a variety of problem contexts to interest students of various demographic and personal characteristics. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 14, students solve word problems that involve unknown additives. The materials state, “A chef formed 450 hamburgers before opening their restaurant for the day. They sold 235 hamburgers throughout the day. The next morning the chef formed another batch of hamburger patties and now has 405 hamburgers. How many hamburgers did the chef make in this new batch?”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Mid Unit Assessment, Problem 3 states, “Laurie, Eusebio, and Yolanda order a pizza. Laurie eats \frac{3}{12} of the pizza. Eusebio eats \frac{5}{12} of the pizza. Yolanda eats the rest of the pizza. What fraction of the pizza did Yolanda eat?” 

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 14, Problem Set, Problem 3, students solve word problems using money. The materials state, “Vanessa has 6 dimes and 2 pennies. Joachim has 1 dollar, 3 dimes, and 5 pennies. Jimmy has 5 dollars and 7 pennies. They want to put their money together to buy a game that costs $8.00. Do they have enough money to buy the game? If not, how much more money do they need? Show or explain your work. Write your answer in decimal form.” 

  • Other names that could represent a variety of cultures are represented in the materials, i.e., Joakim, Cairo, Marcos, Rebecca, Sanjay, and Jerome.

Indicator 3s

Materials provide guidance to encourage teachers to draw upon student home language to facilitate learning.

Narrative Evidence Only
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-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not provide guidance to encourage teachers to draw upon student home language to facilitate learning.

Although the Math Teacher Tools, Oral Language Protocols provide general guidance for supporting students’ native language, there are no specific suggestions for teachers to facilitate daily learning that builds on a student’s multilingualism as an asset. Oral Language Protocols suggests, “When picking a protocol for partner work or small group work, it is important to think through how English learners will be grouped and what role they will play in a particular group. Depending on the demands of the task and situation, students can be grouped with native and proficient English speakers, other ELs, or by home language. English learners should interact with a variety of different speakers in a variety of situations.” Teacher materials do not provide guidance on how to garner information that will aid in learning, including the family’s preferred language of communication, schooling experiences in other languages, literacy abilities in other languages, and previous exposure to academic everyday English.

Indicator 3t

Materials provide guidance to encourage teachers to draw upon student cultural and social backgrounds to facilitate learning.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not provide guidance to encourage teachers to draw upon student cultural and social backgrounds to facilitate learning.

While About Us, Approach, Culturally Relevant, provides a general overview of the cultural relevance within program components, materials do not embed guidance for teachers to amplify students’ diverse linguistic, cultural, and/or social backgrounds to facilitate learning. The materials state, “We are committed to developing curriculum that resonates with a diversity of students’ lived experiences. Our curriculum is reflective of diverse cultures, races and ethnicities and is designed to spark students’ interest and stimulate deep thinking. We are thoughtful and deliberate in selecting high-quality texts and materials that reflect the diversity of our country.” While some diversity in names or problem contexts are present within materials, specific guidance to connect the mathematical goals with students’ funds of knowledge in a way that makes learning relevant or motivating for students, is absent.

Indicator 3u

Materials provide supports for different reading levels to ensure accessibility for students.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not provide supports for different reading levels to ensure accessibility for students.

While the Math Teacher Tools, Special Populations, Supporting Special Populations, Language section notes some general recommendations for supporting language and scaffolding vocabulary, there is nothing specific about reading levels. Guidance includes, “Implement group reading strategies: Call on students throughout the class to read problems aloud, allowing students who might struggle in this area to listen and focus on comprehension. Proactively mark-up the text: To ensure students are spending time on the thinking and learning of the fundamental math concept of the day, consider pre-annotating the text provided to students or providing definitions for words within the text that might be a barrier for students comprehending the text.” Within the Anchor Tasks Notes or Tips for Teachers, there are some suggestions to scaffold vocabulary or concepts to support access to the mathematics, but these do not directly address different student reading levels. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 2, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 Notes state, “You might introduce the language of ‘10 times as many’ in reference to the value of each place, or you can just continue to use language from previous grades such as ‘10 tens are equal to 1 hundred,’ etc.”

  • In Unit 3, Multi-Digit Division, Lesson 11, Discussion of Problem Set, “In the challenge in #10, how did you interpret the word ‘bigger’? Is there another way to interpret that word that would result in a different answer? How does this help demonstrate the importance of attending to precision (MP.6)?”

  • In Unit 5, Fraction Operations, Lesson 3, Anchor Tasks Problem 3 Notes state, “‘When solving word problems students learn to attend carefully to the underlying quantities (MP.6) (NF Progression, p. 14).’ Thus, the last question is intended to get students to attend to the quantities being discussed in the problem, namely the fraction of the bag of candies that is a particular type of candy, rather than the quantity of each candy.” 

Indicator 3v

Manipulatives, both virtual and physical, are accurate representations of the mathematical objects they represent and, when appropriate, are connected to written methods.

2/2
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 meet expectations for providing manipulatives, both virtual and physical, that are accurate representations of the mathematical objects they represent and, when appropriate, are connected to written methods.

The materials provide suggestions and/or links for virtual and physical manipulatives that support the understanding of grade-level concepts. Manipulatives are accurate representations of the mathematical objects they represent and, when appropriate, are connected to written methods. Examples include: 

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 5, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 uses a Millions Place Value Chart as students multiply and divide single units by ten. The materials state, “For this task, students will need base ten blocks (10 ones, 10 tens, 10 hundreds, 1 thousand per group/teacher) and a Millions Place Value Chart.”

  • In Unit 6, Decimal Fractions, Lesson 11, Tips for Teachers uses a game to reinforce hundredths written as decimals. The materials state, “As a supplement to the Problem Set, students can play the game Make Two by the San Francisco Unified School District Mathematics Department.”

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 2, Anchor Tasks, Problem 1 uses a shapes template to sort shapes into groups. The materials state, “Students will need Template: Shapes and paper (preferably circular paper, though not necessarily) for this task.”

Criterion 3w - 3z

The program includes a visual design that is engaging and references or integrates digital technology, when applicable, with guidance for teachers.

0/0
+
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Criterion Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 integrate some technology such as interactive tools, virtual manipulatives/objects, and/or dynamic mathematics software in ways that engage students in the grade-level standards, and the materials have a visual design that supports students in engaging thoughtfully with the subject. The materials do not include or reference digital technology that provides opportunities for teachers and/or students to collaborate with each other, and the materials do not provide teacher guidance for the use of embedded technology to support and enhance student learning.

Indicator 3w

Materials integrate technology such as interactive tools, virtual manipulatives/objects, and/or dynamic mathematics software in ways that engage students in the grade-level/series standards, when applicable.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 integrate some technology such as interactive tools, virtual manipulatives/objects, and/or dynamic mathematics software in ways that engage students in the grade-level/series standards, when applicable.

While technology integration is limited, teachers and students have access to external technology tools and virtual manipulatives, like GeoGebra, Desmos, or other resources, as appropriate. Examples include:

  • In Unit 1, Place Value, Rounding, Addition, and Subtraction, Lesson 4, Tips for Teachers, Digit Ski from Building Conceptual Understanding and Fluency Through Games, students have opportunities to use the applet to practice place value by reading numbers to 1,000,000. 

  • In Unit 8, Shapes and Angles, Lesson 11, NCTM, Patch Tool, students use an applet to use pattern blocks to decompose angles.

Indicator 3x

Materials include or reference digital technology that provides opportunities for teachers and/or students to collaborate with each other, when applicable.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do not include or reference digital  technology that provides opportunities for teachers and/or students to collaborate with each other, when applicable.

Indicator 3y

The visual design (whether in print or digital) supports students in engaging thoughtfully with the subject, and is neither distracting nor chaotic.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 provide a visual design (whether in print or digital) that supports students in engaging thoughtfully with the subject, and is neither distracting nor chaotic.

There is a consistent design within units and lessons that supports learning on the digital platform.

  • Each lesson follows a common format with the following components: Common Core Standards, Criteria for Success, Tips for Teachers, Anchor Tasks, Problem Set & Homework, Target Task, and Additional Practice. The layout for each lesson is user-friendly as each component is included in order from top to bottom on the page. 

  • The font size, amount of directions, and language in student materials is appropriate. 

  • The digital format is easy to navigate and engaging. There is ample space in the Problem Sets, Homework, and Assessments for students to capture calculations and write answers. Teachers can pre-select material from suggested sources and print for students, making it easier to navigate pages.

While the visual layout is appealing, there are spelling and/or grammatical errors within the materials.

Indicator 3z

Materials provide teacher guidance for the use of embedded technology to support and enhance student learning, when applicable.

Narrative Evidence Only
+
-
Indicator Rating Details

The materials reviewed for Fishtank Plus Math Grade 4 do provide teacher guidance for the use of embedded technology to support and enhance student learning, when applicable.

While teacher implementation guidance is included for Anchor Tasks, Notes, Problem Sets, and Homework, there is no embedded technology, so teacher guidance for it is not necessary.

abc123

Report Published Date: 2021/08/18

Report Edition: 2021

Please note: Reports published beginning in 2021 will be using version 1.5 of our review tools. Version 1 of our review tools can be found here. Learn more about this change.

Math K-8 Review Tool

The K-8 review criteria identifies the indicators for high-quality instructional materials. The review criteria supports a sequential review process that reflect the importance of alignment to the standards then consider other high-quality attributes of curriculum as recommended by educators.

For math, our review criteria evaluates materials based on:

  • Focus and Coherence

  • Rigor and Mathematical Practices

  • Instructional Supports and Usability

The K-8 Evidence Guides complement the review criteria by elaborating details for each indicator including the purpose of the indicator, information on how to collect evidence, guiding questions and discussion prompts, and scoring criteria.

The EdReports rubric supports a sequential review process through three gateways. These gateways reflect the importance of alignment to college and career ready standards and considers other attributes of high-quality curriculum, such as usability and design, as recommended by educators.

Materials must meet or partially meet expectations for the first set of indicators (gateway 1) to move to the other gateways. 

Gateways 1 and 2 focus on questions of alignment to the standards. Are the instructional materials aligned to the standards? Are all standards present and treated with appropriate depth and quality required to support student learning?

Gateway 3 focuses on the question of usability. Are the instructional materials user-friendly for students and educators? Materials must be well designed to facilitate student learning and enhance a teacher’s ability to differentiate and build knowledge within the classroom. 

In order to be reviewed and attain a rating for usability (Gateway 3), the instructional materials must first meet expectations for alignment (Gateways 1 and 2).

Alignment and usability ratings are assigned based on how materials score on a series of criteria and indicators with reviewers providing supporting evidence to determine and substantiate each point awarded.

Alignment and usability ratings are assigned based on how materials score on a series of criteria and indicators with reviewers providing supporting evidence to determine and substantiate each point awarded.

For ELA and math, alignment ratings represent the degree to which materials meet expectations, partially meet expectations, or do not meet expectations for alignment to college- and career-ready standards, including that all standards are present and treated with the appropriate depth to support students in learning the skills and knowledge that they need to be ready for college and career.

For science, alignment ratings represent the degree to which materials meet expectations, partially meet expectations, or do not meet expectations for alignment to the Next Generation Science Standards, including that all standards are present and treated with the appropriate depth to support students in learning the skills and knowledge that they need to be ready for college and career.

For all content areas, usability ratings represent the degree to which materials meet expectations, partially meet expectations, or do not meet expectations for effective practices (as outlined in the evaluation tool) for use and design, teacher planning and learning, assessment, differentiated instruction, and effective technology use.

Math K-8

  • Focus and Coherence - 14 possible points

    • 12-14 points: Meets Expectations

    • 8-11 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 8 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Rigor and Mathematical Practices - 18 possible points

    • 16-18 points: Meets Expectations

    • 11-15 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 11 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 38 possible points

    • 31-38 points: Meets Expectations

    • 23-30 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 23: Does Not Meet Expectations

Math High School

  • Focus and Coherence - 18 possible points

    • 14-18 points: Meets Expectations

    • 10-13 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 10 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Rigor and Mathematical Practices - 16 possible points

    • 14-16 points: Meets Expectations

    • 10-13 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 10 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 36 possible points

    • 30-36 points: Meets Expectations

    • 22-29 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 22: Does Not Meet Expectations

ELA K-2

  • Text Complexity and Quality - 58 possible points

    • 52-58 points: Meets Expectations

    • 28-51 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 28 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks - 32 possible points

    • 28-32 points: Meet Expectations

    • 16-27 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 16 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 34 possible points

    • 30-34 points: Meets Expectations

    • 24-29 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 24 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

ELA 3-5

  • Text Complexity and Quality - 42 possible points

    • 37-42 points: Meets Expectations

    • 21-36 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 21 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks - 32 possible points

    • 28-32 points: Meet Expectations

    • 16-27 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 16 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 34 possible points

    • 30-34 points: Meets Expectations

    • 24-29 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 24 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

ELA 6-8

  • Text Complexity and Quality - 36 possible points

    • 32-36 points: Meets Expectations

    • 18-31 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 18 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks - 32 possible points

    • 28-32 points: Meet Expectations

    • 16-27 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 16 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 34 possible points

    • 30-34 points: Meets Expectations

    • 24-29 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 24 points: Does Not Meet Expectations


ELA High School

  • Text Complexity and Quality - 32 possible points

    • 28-32 points: Meets Expectations

    • 16-27 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 16 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Building Knowledge with Texts, Vocabulary, and Tasks - 32 possible points

    • 28-32 points: Meet Expectations

    • 16-27 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 16 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 34 possible points

    • 30-34 points: Meets Expectations

    • 24-29 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 24 points: Does Not Meet Expectations

Science Middle School

  • Designed for NGSS - 26 possible points

    • 22-26 points: Meets Expectations

    • 13-21 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 13 points: Does Not Meet Expectations


  • Coherence and Scope - 56 possible points

    • 48-56 points: Meets Expectations

    • 30-47 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 30 points: Does Not Meet Expectations


  • Instructional Supports and Usability - 54 possible points

    • 46-54 points: Meets Expectations

    • 29-45 points: Partially Meets Expectations

    • Below 29 points: Does Not Meet Expectations