The start of the school year offers a unique time in the academic calendar to obtain some baseline data on how your students view themselves as mathematicians and the discipline of math itself. Most beginning-of-year info sheets solicit information about students’ passions and/or guardians’ phone numbers. This year, I encourage you to ask some questions about math itself. Encourage kids to be honest: What do they like about the subject? What do they dislike? How do they (or do they) view themselves as mathematicians?
The following is a sample card from the Academic Safety Card Set based on Necessary Conditions.
I encourage a mix of free-write prompts and quantitate prompts. Here is a link to a Math Mindsets and Attitudes Survey I created and had a few schools implement.
This mix of free response and Agree / Disagree / Neutral/Not Sure gave us good, actionable data in the form of word jumbles and data around students’ mathematical identity.
You can access the PDF of the survey and facilitation guide from the companion website to my book, Necessary Conditions.
If you’d like the google form of the survey, send me a message and I can make a copy and share it. I’m also happy to help you break down and make sense of the data.