Is Math Instructing Crucial Considering?

“When are we ever going to make use of this?” No joke, years in the past my division coverage to answer college students was “We’re educating you important considering.” Is math educating important considering? I can’t converse for all math courses, however our curriculum was undoubtedly NOT. As soon as I discovered about Depth of Data (DOK) I noticed that almost all of the textbook and all of our worksheets have been low important considering, DOK 1. I feel the aim of math class ought to be to show important considering so it is crucial that as math lecturers we’re conscious of what important considering seems like in math.

Depth of Data (DOK) is a framework that categorizes duties primarily based on their cognitive complexity and the extent of considering required to finish them.

The 4 Ranges of DOK

There are 4 ranges of DOK to explain the degrees of important considering.

  • Stage 1: Recall and Replica – College students are requested to recall info and reproduce beforehand discovered ideas.
  • Stage 2: Abilities and Ideas – College students are requested to use expertise and ideas they’ve discovered to unravel issues or carry out duties.
  • Stage 3: Strategic Considering – College students are requested to motive, plan, and use proof to unravel complicated issues or full complicated duties.
  • Stage 4: Prolonged Considering – College students are requested to make connections between concepts, synthesize info, and switch information to new conditions.

“Stay in DOK 2 and DOK 3. Go to DOK 1 and DOK 4”

-Shelley Burgess

College students ought to be critically considering in math class. Because of this most of what we ask college students to do ought to be no less than DOK 2.

Arithmetic DOK Definitions

It’s difficult to categorize math duties to the right DOK ranges. We regularly mistake arduous for being complicated. This text from WebbAlign incorporates some useful recommendations on what the 4 ranges of DOK are.

The last word objective of utilizing DOK ranges in math instruction is to supply a extra significant and difficult studying expertise for college students.

Highlights From the Article


Following steps is DOK 1 as is “executing a well-defined multi-step process.” A math downside can require a number of steps and nonetheless be low important considering. “Working on polynomials or radicals, utilizing the legal guidelines of exponents, or simplifying rational expressions are thought-about rote procedures.”

“Verbs shouldn’t be labeled as any class…”

It’s actually necessary to grasp that DOK shouldn’t be in regards to the verbs. Attempt to keep away from the DOK wheel that’s prevalent in Google searches for Depth of Data. It’s the stage of complicated reasoning by the scholar that defines the DOK stage, not the phrases used within the process.

Present your work is DOK 1.


College students have to do their very own considering for it to be thought-about DOK 2. My fast and soiled for DOK is “how a lot determine it out is there?” So it’s not the variety of steps it might require, however slightly “participating in some psychological processing past a recurring response in addition to decision-making…”

If I have been to offer you a really massive binder with 1 million steps to place collectively a rocket to the moon, this process could be very tough. You’ll in all probability make a mistake someplace. Nevertheless, when you adopted all 1 million steps completely the rocket would go to the moon. Rocket constructing is a DOK 1 process in case you are solely following the instructions. To raise this process to DOK 2 you would wish to have some ambiguous elements of the instructions, maybe extra like IKEA instructions, that may require you determine some steps.

Asking to scholar to clarify their reasoning is probably going a DOK 2 process. That is totally different from present your work. Itemizing out the steps in phrases continues to be recalling the steps and procedures. College students would wish to clarify why they made a selected determination that goes past recalling the rule.


“DOK 3 requires reasoning and analyzing.” Mathematical reasoning shouldn’t be recalling math procedures and formulation. Mathematical reasoning is far. extra complicated. That is what hopefully college students acquire from taking math courses is the flexibility to motive via a state of affairs and work out what math they should apply and learn how to apply it. Mathematical reasoning doesn’t have to contain numbers. It’s the strategic considering via of an issue and logically determining an answer.

“DOK 3 contains conditions which are nonroutine, extra demanding, extra summary, and extra complicated than DOK 2.”

The place DOK will get difficult is that it’s not simply the outline of the duty to consider. “Notice that the sophistication of a mathematical argument that may be thought-about DOK 3 depends upon the prior information and experiences of the individual.” Prior information can change the DOK stage of a process for a scholar.

Should you count on a scholar to get it proper the primary time, it’s not DOK 3.


I can not emphasize sufficient that the objective is NOT DOK 4. Requiring every day DOK 4 duties in math merely demonstrates a lack of awareness of DOK. You’ll be doing fairly good to do DOK 4 a few times a college 12 months.

DOK 4 usually has “the necessity to carry out actions over days and weeks (DOK 4) slightly than in a single sitting…” Whereas it’s not essentially a venture or analysis exercise, it might be extraordinarily tough for college students to attain complicated reasoning in a single day. The figuring out issue is NOT time, nonetheless. “The prolonged time interval shouldn’t be a distinguishing issue if the required work is barely repetitive and doesn’t require making use of vital conceptual understanding and higher-order considering.”

Is Coding DOK 4?

Is coding DOK 4? Coding is a verb and it’s not the verb that determines the DOK stage. After I first discovered to code JavaScript after which needed to jot down my first Add-on for Google Sheets in Google Apps Script I needed to do a LOT of determine it out. I used to be not following a tutorial with steps and instructions.Taking my information of JavaScript and prolonged it to work out the way it utilized in a distinct context of Google Apps Script.

I had an authentic venture concept and have to adapt what I knew to a brand new state of affairs. This was DOK 4 reasoning. Nevertheless, at present if I needed to code in Google Apps Script I’m in all probability at finest doing DOK 2 stage reasoning and probably DOK 1. If I can effortlessly produce a script with out making an error I’m utilizing my recall expertise. The identical process of making code to rearrange scholar names into tabs of a spreadsheet was DOK 4 for me, nonetheless, now this can be a DOK 1 process. I now not need to determine it out.

Troublesome Vs. Complicated

One of many causes it may be so difficult to align a math process to DOK is the notion that if a scholar struggles with it they should be doing complicated reasoning.

Simply because it’s arduous doesn’t make it complicated.

Discover within the graphic beneath that on a matrix of complicated and tough that math duties are generally excessive problem however low complexity. That means they’re DOK 1, however college students battle with them.

Is Math Teaching Critical Thinking? most common are problems that are hard but not complex. this shows a qudarant of difficulty low to high and complexity low to high. Most common are the upper left low complexity and high difficulty.

Absolutely, if a scholar is doing Calculus they’re doing DOK 4. Really, many of the Calculus e book I had in faculty was DOK 1. If the e book offers you the components and you then use it to do apply issues then it’s doing the considering for the scholar and thus DOK 1.

Robert Kaplinsky

Robert Kaplinsky is, for my part, the skilled in math DOK. In case you are seeking to improve the DOK of your class take a while to learn Robert Kaplinsky’s weblog. He’s additionally the founding father of Open Center. There are DOK 2 and DOK 3 stage math issues. Discover they don’t seem to be DOK 4 stage math issues as a result of, once more, DOK 4 shouldn’t be the objective!

Constructing Considering Lecture rooms

The e book “Constructing Considering Lecture rooms” by Peter Liljedahl took a analysis primarily based method to discovering learn how to get college students to do extra considering in a math classroom. The e book is a simple learn and transformational in how we method educating math. Join the Facebook group.

  • Is Math Teaching Critical Thinking?

    Math class SHOULD be educating college students to critically assume, discover patterns, analyze, and handle information. Is Math Instructing Crucial Considering? Utilizing conventional math textbooks is that this occurring? No.

  • TurboTax and EVERFI: Helping High School Students with How To File Their Taxes

    College students need assistance studying learn how to pay their taxes. This FREE simulation in EVERFI in partnership with TurboTax is simply the factor to make it straightforward to assist your college students achieve success in the actual world. Serving to Excessive Faculty College students with How To File Their Taxes may be life altering for a lot of college students.

  • How Do You Highlight Cells of the Same Color

    AliceKeeler Choose the Cells is a Google Sheets Add-on designed to assist lecturers choose cells with a background colour extra effectively. With this add-on, lecturers can single-click on any cell in a variety that has a background colour and robotically choose all the opposite cells in that vary with the identical colour. How Do You Spotlight Cells of the Similar Coloration

  • How Will Teaching Be Different Post AI?

    The toothpaste is out of the tube and we can’t put it again. The discharge of ChatGPT has proven us that conventional college assignments may be accomplished by robots. So what now? I first requested ChatGPT what it thinks the modifications to educating might be after which I give my opinions on how educating might be totally different put up AI:

  • 7 Characteristics of a Student Centered Classroom

    Scholar centered studying is specializing in the wants and pursuits of the scholars. Scholar centered school rooms are more durable than a conventional mannequin. The benefit helps college students to really have a ardour for studying. Higher relationship constructing will also be a biproduct.

  • What Makes EdTech Engaging?

    Know-how by itself shouldn’t be participating. The interface and person expertise should be designed for engagement. As colleges and school rooms make choices on what EdTech instruments to think about, scholar engagement and trainer engagement have to be excessive on the record. What Makes EdTech Participating?

Is Math Instructing Crucial Considering?

Analyze Present DOK Ranges

Begin by reviewing your present math issues to determine their present DOK stage. This can aid you determine areas the place you’ll be able to improve the cognitive complexity of the duties. Firstly, evaluation…

Develop Studying Targets

Subsequent, deal with growing studying goals that require higher-order considering expertise, comparable to evaluation, synthesis, and analysis. Secondly, develop…

Improve Complexity

Design math issues that align with the educational goals you’ve developed. Make sure that these issues problem college students to use what they’ve discovered in new and complicated methods. Furthermore, design…

Incorporate Actual-World

Incorporate real-world situations or information units into the issues to extend the authenticity and relevance of the duties. By doing so, college students will have the ability to see the sensible utility of what they’re studying. Moreover, incorporate…

Design Rubrics

Create rubrics that align with the DOK ranges of the issues you’ve designed. These rubrics will aid you assess scholar efficiency and supply suggestions that may information their studying. Lastly, create…

By following these steps, you’ll be able to improve the DOK ranges of the maths issues you create, offering a extra significant and difficult studying expertise on your college students. Is Math Instructing Crucial Considering? It might be!