Formative Assessment

Why Ask Why?

Math Solutions understands that making sure all students are ready for the increased rigor of the Common Core means that teachers need to be able to provide the right feedback at the right time to move learners forward and activate student ownership of learning. Effective formative assessments aligned to the CCSS should elicit evidence of learning that helps teachers address learning gaps at the point of instruction.

The Math Solutions Approach

Formative assessment helps teachers determine a student’s comprehension of mathematical concepts, identify gaps in knowledge and guide and direct instruction accordingly to ensure understanding.

A thoughtful collection of strategies, the Math Solutions approach to formative assessment:

  • Provides teachers and students with insight into students’ understanding
  • Reveals students’ misconceptions
  • Occurs as a part of daily instruction
  • Guides instruction to improve student learning
  • Involves listening carefully to students; focusing on student responses to questions and examining written work with an understanding of their thinking

Math Reasoning Inventory

We are excited to present Math Reasoning Inventory (MRI), an online formative assessment tool now available free of charge to all teachers.

Read about MRI in an article written by Marilyn Burns, founder of Math Solutions, and then visit

Formative Assessment Supports Common Core State Standards

Supporting Common Core State Standards by encouraging teachers to explore students’ levels of mathematics understanding—formative assessment provides teachers with a deeper look into each student’s knowledge.

Helping teachers decide “what’s next,” formative assessment guides teachers in providing feedback to students and allows educators to individualize and align instruction to ensure students gain the necessary skills and knowledge needed to achieve mathematical fluency.

The result is engaged students, the achievement of higher standards and teachers who find work more professionally fulfilling.