CPM math and goformative

My district is adopting the College Prep Math (CPM) curriculum next year. I love using formative with my students, but not yet having any PD on the new curriculum, I am wondering how other CPM teachers are using formative to enhance the learning experience with CPM. I would love any insight/experience you have interweaving the two.


This is a great question, Amy! I am tagging @Math_Educators in here in case anyone uses CPM math and would be up for sharing their experiences! Feel free to use tags like that whenever you are trying to reach subject-area teachers!

The Beaverton School District in Oregon started using CPM for Grades 6-8 and I interweave these two all the time. In fact, they make for a nice pairing. CPM is fantastic for team-centered math and each team member will have a role. In your PD sessions, you will learn great teaching strategies. If you haven’t had any PD on CPM yet, then that also means they might not have released the textbook for you to look at. This is a bummer because teachers like to be prepared. Below, you will find out somethings you can do right now while you wait and details on how I interweave CPM and Formative.

Playing the Waiting Game
While you wait for CPM access, start making Formatives now on the following topics and/or find formatives already made in the formative library. I have added some and will keep adding more.

Adding/Subtracting Integers
Combining Like Terms (getting more comfortable with variables)
Algebraic Expressions
Absolute Value
Graphing a line or anything graphing related (y=mx+b)
Lots and Lots of Solving for x (if you are Grade7/8)
One Step Equations
Two Step Equations
Systems of Equation (if you are teaching grade 8)

If you are Grade 6, it still wouldn’t hurt to at least familiarize your students with some if not all of the above (minus systems)

Part 2: Interweaving CPM and GF (CPMGF)

I use my iPAD a lot for this part. CPM is an online math program. They do have textbooks available but my understanding is they are mostly online. If your school is 1:1 with technology and every student has a chromebook or iPAD, they you will have the online version as well. If not, then you will be dealing with the textbook. Either way, our goal is to get the problems into a formative by taking a picture/screenshot etc. and inserting that pic into Formative. I used to have the students do their work out of a workbook but I felt like I was not taking advantage of this online curriculum. So, I began using GF so that my students could do their online math curriculum…online.

Here is exactly what I do: I take a screenshot of a photo from their online CPM textbook. Insert the photo into “Notability” to edit that photo or annotate on it to help my students more, then take another screenshot to place into one of my Formatives. If you don’t need to edit or annotate, then skip the Notability step. BTW “Notability” is amazing and a must-have if you are teaching CPM (or teaching anything). I make ALL my class notes and lecture notes using Notability. Once the picture is in via the “enhanced photo” option via GF, I make a lot of short answer, multiple choice, true-false, and show your work type of questions. This makes grading 90 students only take 15 minutes vs looking at 90 workbooks everyday.

It will be helpful if you have an 80-minute math class but if you don’t there are other ways to be more creative. In fact, if you do not have a lot of math time, making Formatives will definitely help ensure CPM work gets covered. Have some days where all you do is skill work and remedies and other days where you do projects and team building activities. On the team building days, just do a quick Formative as a warm up. I use a Formative everyday now.

Hope that was helpful. Sorry to go on forever.



Thank you! I believe that I will have access as of tomorrow, so I can start looking over the program this summer - definitely one of my first requests when I found out we were adopting the curriculum and the PD wasn’t until August. As I become more nd more familiar with CPM, I may be visiting your formatives (if you are willing to share) and picking your brain a little more.

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