Tips for Math Teachers!

Read our tips for how to use Formative in your Math classes

Rebecca Worden avatar
Written by Rebecca Worden
Updated over a week ago

Read on to find out more about how to use different question types for Math, examples of sites you can embed into your formatives, and inspiring examples of formatives you can clone!

Using different question types for Math

Here are some of our favorite question types to use in Math classes!

🌟 Drawing

Students can draw, type, underline, and even upload images in a Drawing question. Teachers can likewise draw, type, and upload images to the background! Here are some of our favorite uses for Math:

  1. Upload an image of a word problem to the background, and have students use the "CUBES" (circle, underline, box keywords, evaluate, solve) strategy to solve it.

  2. Upload an image of different shapes, and have students circle ones with specific properties.

  3. Upload or draw or type a solution to a problem that contains a deliberate mistake. Ask students to circle the mistake and/or annotate by typing.

  4. Upload a blank graph, and ask students to complete it by drawing:

🌟 Math keyboard - use with any question type!

You can choose any question type, and add a Math equation to it by clicking on the "+" icon within the question:

Simply click on the equation that appears to open the editor and start editing the equation!

🌟 Use LaTeX with any question type

Need a symbol that's not available in our Math keyboard? Use LaTeX to write it instead! Simply write the LaTeX, highlight, and select "LaTeX" from the formatting menu that appears:

🌟 Give students clear guidelines

For Short Answer and Numeric questions, the students' responses must match the answer key exactly in order to be marked as correct. For example, let students know they should write units as "inches" and not "in" in order to get credit. (Silver/Gold level users have the option to enable Partial Match to avoid this!)

📌 Useful math sites that you can embed into your formatives

You can embed websites anywhere in a formative, either as a content item (all users) or within a question (Silver/Gold only). Check out our Embed article for instructions. 

Great Math sites that embed into formatives include:

🌟 Gizmos

🌟 ClassCalc - you can embed their basic, scientific, or graphing calculator

You can also add Khan Academy YouTube videos as content items (all users) or within questions (Silver/Gold plan) by adding them as a video.

Silver/Gold plans have even more features!

🌟 Add Show Your Work to any other question type!

Get the best of both worlds! Add a Show Your Work canvas to any question type, so Formative auto-grades the students' final answer, and you get to see their workings!

🌟 Numeric

Although you can add Math to any question type, the Numeric question type is the only question that provides the same numeric keyboard for students to type in their answer.

🌟 Graphing

Our Graphing question type enables students to produce a graph:

🌟 Resequence

You can use the Resequence question type to ask students to put integers, decimals, or fractions in order!

🌟 Categorize

Use the Categorize question type to have students match properties with figures or vocabulary terms with definitions!

🌟 Hot Spot

Use the Hot Spot question type to create Math Mazes!

  1. Upload the Math Maze of your choice

  2. Add hot spots to all possible answers to make them interactive

  3. Toggle on "Multi-select"

  4. Checkmark the correct answers for auto-grading

  5. Toggle on "Allow partial credit" if you'd like your students to receive credit even if they get only some answers correctly

  6. You have the option adjust your assign settings to allow students to see answers (instantly or after submission)

Here is an example by Teacher Glennan Saraceno:

🌟 Add responses to the answer key as you grade

If you see responses from students who haven't followed your guidelines exactly and have written their equation in a different order (for example), but you still want to give anyone who provided the same answer the credit, you can grade their response as correct and then add their response to the answer key - updating the grading for all students automatically.

🌟 Draw feedback

You can draw on and annotate your students' Drawing / Show Your Work responses, directly on the canvas, and your drawings are automatically saved as an image that you can send as instant feedback to your students! Try circling errors, typing comments, and using a different color to show the correct process.

🌟 NEW! Integrated Calculator Experience (Silver/Gold feautre)

Silver and Gold plan subscribers can turn on access to an integrated calculator for their students to use. Click here for full details!

📌 Great examples of Math formatives

Check out these awesome formatives, created by other Math educators! Click on the title to clone them to your dashboard, and you can edit and assign them to your classes!

🌟 Formative LaTeX examples: this gives lots of examples of using LaTeX, including quadratic equations, set-builder notation, and more!

🌟 Gummy Bear Math (7th, 8th, 9th grade): this uses a fun format to practice finding the volume of rectangular prisms and cylinders.

🌟 Geometry: Similar Polygons (9th, 10th, 11th, grade): this is an awesomely detailed formative, full of videos and images as well as engaging questions!

🌟 Fraction Pre-Test (3rd, 4th): this is a simple but effective formative that uses images and questions to check students' knowledge

🌟 Visual Patterns (5th, 6th, 7th): this challenges students to recognize and continue patterns through drawing and writing equations!

Additional Resources

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