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Math Menu

Meet the needs of all your learners through differentiated practice and small group instruction.

What is Math Menu?

Math Menu is the part of the math block used for “just right” practice and reflection around concepts students have already been taught. 

Students work independently and with their peers to practice content at their own pace and readiness level, through problem solving, journal reflections, and games. This allows the teacher, interventionists, and special educators the opportunity  to work with small groups. This workshop approach allows educators the flexibility to provide targeted or specialized instruction to different groups of students,  Math Menu can be a great time to double dip on services for students who have more complex needs and work with multiple service providers.

An essential element of Math Menu is choice for all students - even when students spend part of their menu time working with teachers.  During Menu, all students are given the agency to make decisions about their learning and how they practice.  The problem solvers, journals, and windowpanes are all designed to allow students to have choice in the work that they do to become stronger mathematicians.

There are three critical elements to running a Math Menu practice in the classroom:

  1. Purposeful Offerings 
  2. Choice and Independence
  3. Targeted Small Group Instruction

Math Menu is a time for students to engage in independent practice, play, and exploration.  Our goal is to select learning opportunities, or menu offerings, for our students’ Math Menus that allow students to practice computation and problem solving at the independent level.  Educators build a Math Menu of purposeful offerings for students to have agency in their growth.  Students are empowered to be in charge of their own learning by providing choice in which menu offerings a student engages in.  Math Menu time is a reserved space in your math block for providing specialized math instruction to meet the needs of individuals in a diverse class.  A Math Menu of purposeful offerings for all students allows the educators in the room the freedom to respond to all students’ growth needs with targeted small group instruction at the teacher table and engaging math challenges and purposeful practice on the menu.

Below you can find a simple example of a menu offering including student-facing resources, as well as a planning sheet a teacher might use to use formative assessment data to plan for differentiation during Math Menu and across the balanced math block.

Looking for something more to support your Math Menu?

Members of All Learners Online have access to our full, searchable, and constantly growing library of Math Menu resources, as well as asynchronous virtual courses to deepen learning about implementing Math Menu. You can preview that library here:

Download Sample Math Menu Resources

This is an example of a menu of purposeful offerings targeting the early part of the Grade 2 HLC Learning Progression. Click the image below to download the full PDF with all the resources included.



Below is an example of a planning template a teacher or instructional team could use plan for differentiated instruction in Math Menu, as well as across the math block. Click on the image to download the PDF. 

Data to action planning template for differentiated instruction in small groups and across math menu


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