Front Row fits into a class in four primary settings:
1) Independent Practice
2) Small Groups
3) Whole Class
Front Row's independent practice program gives teachers a lot of flexibility in determining how it will best fit into their classrooms. Some teachers use Front Row during the beginning of the math block as a review tool with their whole class, and others use it during math intervention. That being said, the most common math block that incorporates Front Row looks similar to the schedule below (time spent on Front Row in bold):
5 minutes: Daily Review
10-15 minutes: Introduction to New Material
10-15 minutes: Guided Practice
15-25 minutes: Independent Practice - all students on Front Row, teacher pulls groups
5-10 minutes: Exit Ticket/Quick Check - teachers can also pull data from Front Row
During the example above, the teacher could use the Groups page on his or her dashboard in order to pull small groups while the rest of the class works independently. Assured that each student is practicing math at an appropriate level, the teacher will have time to focus on helping that small group of students.
Looking at the Groups page in the sample class below, I can see 4 groups that I could pull to work on specific concepts with. Since the other groups only have 1 or 2 students, I could let them work independently so that I can maximize my effort by working with the larger groups. I could also add them into a larger group if I feel they could benefit from a review of that material.
Group 1 is working on mastering the Common Core Standard 3.NBT.1. If I need materials to use with this group, I have several options. I can:
Have all students complete an Assigned Practice session on level 3.NBT.1
Review sample questions on the Standards page for standard 3.NBT.1
Show the group an instructional video from the Standards page - Teaching resources
Print 3 copies of a standard-based printable for 3.NBT.1
Standards Page - Sample Questions and Instructional Videos
Standard Based Printable for 3.NBT.1
1) Select the standard from the drop down menu and click “Generate PDF”
2) Print the correct number of copies so that each student in the small group will have a printable
Since you will be focused on your small group while other students are working independently, it is important that you review expectations with the students who are not in the small group. Make sure that they know what to do if they get stuck on a problem, what the expected noise level in the classroom is, the goals for the session, and how to get help if they really need it.
What should I do if I don’t have enough devices?
If you don’t have enough devices, but still want all students in your class to work on Front Row, use the Individualized printables option. With one click of the mouse, every student in your class will get a tailored printable practice sheet. Independent practice will still have the adaptive aspect that Front Row teachers have come to love, and you will still be free to pull small groups - knowing that all your students will be getting meaningful practice.
Small Group Use of Front Row
Not every classroom or school has a device for every student to use during math class. For these classes, using Front Row with small groups has proven valuable. Rather than foregoing Front Row entirely, a teacher can form small groups using the Groups page on the Front Row dashboard, and then create a meaningful math center to reach that small group.
In order to form small groups most meaningfully, teachers should use the following combinations in their classrooms.
Teacher + Groups Page + Standards Page Sample Questions
In this combination, the teacher will work with a small group of students on a particular standard. He or she will use the Groups page on the teacher dashboard to select which groups to pull. Ideally, the teacher will pull the larger groups, but if a teacher has not met with students in a long time, he or she can pull those students for a “catch up” small group session. The teacher will then open the Standards page of the standard the group is working on and review the sample questions with the group as a whole. Walk them through the 1st question, work on the 2nd question together, and have the students try to solve the last 2 questions.
Teacher + Groups Page + Standards Video
This combination is used either when students need to review a concept covered long ago, or to learn a new concept that has not been covered yet. The teacher will pull a group of students that is working on the same standard - either well below grade level or well above grade level. The teacher will then go to the Standards page of the standard the group is working on, select a video from the teaching resources and have the students watch the video. The teacher will then have the students attempt to answer 1 or 2 sample questions, answering any questions and clearing up any misconceptions.
Teacher + Groups Page + Printables
In this combination, a teacher will select meaningful small groups from the Groups page and print the correct number of standards-based practice printables. Make sure to use standards-based printables (not individualized) so that all students will practice the same problems together. Walk the students through some of the problems, and then have them work either in a group or independently on the rest. Make sure you remain there to provide support and answer questions as they are working.
Groups Page + Printables
In this combination, a teacher will use the groups page to determine which groups of students will practice at the Front Row center. He or she will then print standards-based practice printables and have students work on the printables as a small group. The teacher is not needed during this center, and students will help one another to solve the problems.
Groups Page + Standards Video
In this combination, a teacher sets up a computer or other screen for students to watch an instructional video. He or she has several tabs open, each tab with a different video per group. When the group of students goes to the “Video center”, they will watch an instructional video designed to help them master the concept on which they are currently working.
Whole Class Use of Front Row
Facilitating inquiry based lessons is a great way to incorporate Front Row into the whole class setting. Inquiry based lessons are designed to encourage collaborative problem-solving among students. The lessons are most effectively used with whole classes that can be split into groups of 3-4 students.
Each lesson series covers one or more math standards and spans anywhere from 3 to 5 days. The lessons are highly engaging and immerse students in real-world scenarios where they must show their work and explain their thinking.
Front Row has become a teacher’s favorite for assigning homework, because it saves hours each week. There are two main ways to assign homework using Front Row - printables and device practice.
The printables tab makes sending home worksheets easier than ever. With the Individualized printable option, teachers will generate a printable for each student based on their current level. This means that there’s no need to search for the perfect practice sheet to help your low students, a different sheet for your students at grade level and a 3rd sheet for your high students. With one click of the button, each student in your class will have a perfectly leveled homework practice - and you’ll have the answer keys at the end of the document.
You also have the option of sending every student home with the same worksheet. If you just covered 3.NF.1 in class and really want all students to work on that concept for homework, you can use the Standards-based Printable option to print enough copies of a 3.NF.1 worksheet for all students. The printable generated will contain an answer key for easy grading the next day.
Device Practice for Homework
Many teachers prefer assigning a certain amount of time practicing Front Row for homework. With so many students having access to iPads and computers at home, this option works well in many classes. A teacher can determine whether a student completed his or her homework on a particular day, how many questions he or she answered, and his or her percentage correct using our Sessions page. This option makes assigning and grading math homework easier than ever before - saving hours upon hours of searching, printing and grading homework.
Whether you use Front Row for independent practice, in small groups, as a whole class, or for homework, it is a valuable program that will get the best out of each and every student in your class.