Peer Editing In Math

Todd Seal, elite member on my list of Bloggers Who Don’t Blog Enough, makes the wait worth our while with some great peer review strategies, which I’ll co-opt for math as soon as possible:

“Create two piles,” I said. “Which ones passed and which ones did not? There will be three paragraphs in each pile.”

Great conversations ensued, both in the small groups and as a class. Some shocking revelations occurred (“That one didn’t pass!?”). This was worth my time.

Once again, great teaching and free weekends prove mutually exclusive.

I'm Dan and this is my blog. I'm a former high school math teacher and current head of teaching at Desmos. More here.


  1. Tell me about it. I haven’t had much free time due to all this (hence the low blog output) and there’s a new batch of essays to go through before the final writing piece comes in next month.

    Pulling examples is a huge time sink. Not only in deciding which ones to put in front of the students’ eyes, but also in formatting (gigantic concern), copying, designing a clear way to get the task done (use different fonts for each sample). Hopefully well worth it, though.

    I find it easier to simply pick one period to pull all samples from. It’s too overwhelming otherwise. “All of these samples today come from sixth period. I’ll pull samples from your writing next time.” Just wait till you get to sixth period ’cause they’re all crazed about whose writing they are looking at. And be sure you pick fairly middle of the road samples, nothing from the 90-100% pile and nothing from the 50% pile. Pull from the 70-80% pile and you’ll be glad you did. Students will, too, because that writing is easier to imitate and seems within reach, quite often.

    Thanks for the repost, Dan. I’ll put all these ideas and more into my follow up.