cubes and push and support card

Learners in adult education classrooms have widely disparate intake scores and mathematical problem-solving skills. Serving students in a mixed-ability, open-enrollment classroom is a challenge for teachers. This workshop explores how to plan for differentiation without separating students into ability levels. Rather, instructors create a learning environment where all students engage with one high-cognitive-demand task regardless of their prior knowledge or experience in mathematics. Push and support cards allow students who are ready to be challenged further to have that extension, while allowing students who need to make connections and build understanding to have that support. This instructional strategy enables educators to provide students with the space to work at their own pace on a shared math problem, taking the task to the level that is just right for each learner.


    This professional development activity/course is designed for:

  • Teachers at all levels of math ability and comfort

In this interactive, 90-minute workshop, you will learn how push and support cards can be used to modify a cognitively demanding math task so as to provide equal access to higher-level mathematics for students at all levels. You will engage with a task that includes the push and support strategy and will explore various entry points to the task. Then, you will analyze examples of student work and practice choosing which push or support card you feel would best support each individual student. You will leave with access to free resources that contain: high-cognitive-demand tasks with ready-made push and support cards, a step-by-step guide that describes how to create push and support cards, and a how-to guide for teachers so you can immediately use this strategy with your students.

    Learning Objectives

    Upon completion of this professional development activity/course, you will be able to:

  • Describe more than one way to solve a math problem
  • Explain how students in a mixed-level class can work together on one high-cognitive-demand task
  • Identify questions or prompts that will move students forward with their current thinking
  • Use push and support tasks with students in a mixed-level class
Presenter(s) / Facilitator(s)
02/29/2024 - 10:00 am to 02/29/2024 - 11:30 am

United States

PD Center
SABES Mathematics and Adult Numeracy Curriculum and Instruction PD Center
Topic Area
CCRSAE (College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education)
Distance and Blended Learning
ESOL/English Learners
High School Equivalency (HiSET/GED)
Learning Disabilities / Differences
Mathematics and Adult Numeracy
PDP Eligible