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Table of Contents

Unit 1: Activity 3: What are the Learning Progressions?

Unit 1 Activity 3 is titled, “What are the Learning
Progressions?” and will take approximately 10
minutes to complete. 

The purpose of this activity is for participants to develop
a common understanding of learning progressions. 

The CCSS for Mathematics convey a unified vision of the key ideas and supporting concepts within mathematics and reflect mathematical progressions. The definitions below explain how progressions supported the development of the CCSS for Mathematics and how Learning Progressions affect student learning.

According to the Institute for Mathematics in Education External Link at the University of Arizona, the CCSS for Mathematics were built on progressions — narrative documents describing the progression of a topic across a number of grade levels, informed by both research on children's cognitive development and by the logical structure of mathematics. Take five minutes and review their Web site.

Time 2 Read

According to the National Research Council, learning progressions:

  • Can be identified as the path that children might follow as instruction helps them move from naive ideas to more sophisticated understanding 
  • Are descriptions of successively more sophisticated ways of thinking about an idea that follow one another as students learn: They lay out in words and examples what it means to move toward more expert understanding 
  • Are not inevitable and there is no one correct order
  • May have more than one path that leads to competence

— Source: Systems for State Science Assessment, National Research Council (2005)
Retrieved from  External Link