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Norms are agreements on how members of a group will treat one another and help contribute to a positive classroom environment. They are not the same as rules; rules are imposed by the teacher for the sake of safety and efficiency and there are clear consequences for breaking the rules. Norms are enforced by everyone in the community, both the teacher and the students, to keep students accountable for their learning.


These math norms reflect our beliefs about learning math and are centered around fostering perseverance, collaboration, and risk-taking.


Math Norms:

  • We value learning over knowing. Math is not about speed, memorizing procedures, or “getting done”; it is about ideas, creativity, and sense-making.
  • Collaboration moves our thinking forward. We listen to and value each other’s ideas, ask questions, push for reasons, and are open to revising our thinking.
  • We are aware of when to step up and step back. We share our ideas and make space for others to share theirs.


Group Norms:

  • No quitting. Challenges are normal. Mistakes are expected. We can get stuck and then get ourselves unstuck.
  • No loners. Everyone participates. No one is done until everyone is done.
  • No spoilers. Find out what others think and don’t rush to the answer. Help others do things for themselves.