The 5x8 Card

The 5x8 Card is designed for (and with) school principals to help them observe students' use of Practice Standards that are an integral part of the Common Core State Standards Mathematics (CCSS-M). The Card was developed by a Strategic Education Research Partnership (SERP) team working in collaboration with math leaders and principals from two California school districts. The Card is a set of seven actions that help school principals target student actions related to learning mathematics. The seven actions are:

  1. All students participate.
  2. Students say a second sentence.
  3. Students talk about each other's thinking.
  4. Students revise their thinking.
  5. Students use academic language.
  6. ELLs develop language through explanation.
  7. Students engage and persevere.

The card is not designed as a teacher evaluation tool; rather, to focus observers' attention on what students are saying and doing so that their work can be at the center of educators' discussions. The SERP team has used the 5x8 Card to organize professional development. They encourage educators to use the card as is, or revise the card to suit local needs and goals.

Content Comments 

Concise and concrete, this highly useful tool is an excellent addition to educators' toolkits. It can help students improve their math practices and learning. The seven action statements are well supported by relevant research, with each action statement representing several CCSS-M Practices. The resource includes videos of Phil Daro, one of the authors of the CCSS-M,  discussing the use of the 5x8 cards.

Downloading the actual 5x8 Card can be a little tricky: users click on the upper-left hand corner of the webpage, where a graphic says, "Download the card! The 5x8 Card" (or users can click here). Be advised that the format will initially appear upside down, conforming to a 5x8 card.