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The Five Practices in Practice [Middle School] - Book Cover Look Inside

The Five Practices in Practice [Middle School]

Successfully Orchestrating Mathematics Discussions in Your Middle School Classroom

By: Margaret (Peg) S. Smith, Miriam Gamoran Sherin

Enhance your fluency in the five practices—anticipating, monitoring, selecting, sequencing, and connecting—to bring powerful discussions of mathematical concepts to life in your middle school classroom.
Product Details
  • Grade Level: PreK-12
  • ISBN: 9781544321189
  • Published By: Corwin
  • Series: Corwin Mathematics Series
  • Year: 2019
  • Page Count: 232
  • Publication date: March 07, 2019

Price: $38.95

Price: $38.95
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Take a deep dive into the five practices for facilitating productive mathematical discussions

Take a deeper dive into understanding the five practices—anticipating, monitoring, selecting, sequencing, and connecting—for facilitating productive mathematical conversations in your middle school classrooms and learn to apply them with confidence. This follow-up to the modern classic, Five Practices for Orchestrating Productive Mathematics Discussions, shows the five practices in action in middle school classrooms and empowers teachers to be prepared for and overcome the challenges common to orchestrating math discussions.

The chapters unpack the five practices and guide teachers to a deeper understanding of how to use each practice effectively in an inquiry-oriented classroom. This book will help you launch meaningful mathematical discussion through 
  • Key questions to set learning goals, identify high-level tasks, anticipate student responses, and develop targeted assessing and advancing questions that jumpstart productive discussion—before class begins 
  • Video excerpts from real middle school classrooms that vividly illustrate the five practices in action and include built-in opportunities for you to consider effective ways to monitor students’ ideas, and successful approaches for selecting, sequencing, and connecting students’ ideas during instruction 
  • “Pause and Consider” prompts that help you reflect on an issue—and, in some cases, draw on your own classroom experience—prior to reading more about it
  • “Linking To Your Own Instruction” sections help you implement the five practices with confidence in your own instruction

The book and companion website provide an array of resources including planning templates, sample lesson plans and completed monitoring tools, and mathematical tasks. Enhance your fluency in the five practices to bring powerful discussions of mathematical concepts to life in your classroom.

"This books takes 5 Practices for Orchestrating Productive Mathematics Discussions to the next level as readers experience what these practices look like in real mathematics classrooms in middle school. The authors specifically address the challenges one might face in implementing the classrooms by providing recommendations and concrete examples to avoid these challenges. This book is a must read for teachers who want to amplify their classroom implementation of the five practices."
Cathy Martin, Executive Director of Curriculum & Instruction
Denver Public Schools

Key features

This book is a comprehensive, ready-to-use, professional development plan inside a book’s covers!

—Francis (Skip) Fennell, Author, Past President, NCTM


  • Description of three real teachers through planning and conducting a lesson—see all 5 practices play out
  • Solutions to the most common math discussion-related challenges
  • 65 minutes of video, plus video-analysis activities
  • Teaching takeaways, pause and consider moments, vignettes, student work, tasks, tools, and templates.
  • A companion website with downloadable tools and templates



Margaret (Peg)  S. Smith photo

Margaret (Peg) S. Smith

Margaret (Peg) Smith is a Professor Emerita at University of Pittsburgh. Over the past two decades she has been developing research-based materials for use in the professional development of mathematics teachers. She has authored or coauthored over 90 books, edited books or monographs, book chapters, and peer-reviewed articles including the best seller Five Practices for Orchestrating Productive Discussions (co-authored with Mary Kay Stein). She was a member of the writing team for Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All and she is a co-author of two new books (Taking Action: Implementation Effective Mathematics Teaching Practices Grades 6-8 & 9-12) that provide further explication of the teaching practices first describe in Principles to Actions. She was a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (2001-2003; 2003 – 2005), of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (2006-2009), and of Teachers Development Group (2009 – 2017).

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


About the Authors


Chapter 1 – Introduction

     The Five Practices in Practice: An Overview

     Purpose and Content

     Classroom Video Context

     Meet the Teachers

     Using this Book

     Norms for Video Viewing

     Getting Started!

Chapter 2 – Setting Goals and Selecting Tasks

     Part 1 – Unpacking the Practice: Setting Goals and Selecting Tasks

     Part 2 – Challenges Teachers Face: Setting Goals and Selecting Tasks


Chapter 3 – Anticipating Student Responses

     Part 1 – Unpacking the Practice: Anticipating Student Responses

     Part 2 – Challenges Teachers Face: Anticipating Student Responses


Chapter 4 – Monitoring Student Work

     Part 1 – Unpacking the Practice: Monitoring Student Work

     Part 2 – Challenges Teachers Face: Monitoring Student Work


Chapter 5 – Selecting and Sequencing Student Solutions

     Part 1 – Unpacking the Practice: Selecting and Sequencing Student Solutions

     Part 2 – Challenges Teachers Face: Selecting and Sequencing Student Solutions


Chapter 6 – Connecting Student Solutions

     Part 1 – Unpacking the Practice: Connecting Student Solutions

     Part 2 – Challenges Teachers Face: Connecting Student Responses


Chapter 7 – Looking Back and Looking Ahead

     Why Use the Five Practices Model

     Getting Started with the Five Practices

     Plan Lessons Collaboratively

     Observe and Debrief Lessons

     Reflect on Your Lesson

     Video Clubs

     Organize a Book Study

     Explore Additional Resources


Appendix A – Web-based Resources for Tasks and Lesson Plans

Appendix B – Monitoring Chart

Appendix C – Mrs. Mossotti’s Monitoring Chart

Appendix D – Hold All Students Accountable

Appendix E – Lesson Planning Template




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