Improved Planning and Assessment Resources for EngageNY Math


Back in April, we posted about two of our favorite free EngageNY resources – a compacted pacing guide and standards-focused “snapshot assessments.”  Both come from Federal Way Public Schools in Federal Way, Washington.  Since that post, FWPS has done some reformatting – and we’ve done some reorganizing on our site as well!


The “new” pacing guide from FWPS has been expanded and reformatted to include:

– Notes on whether lessons are considered optional, extension, or remedial (and the reasoning for that)

– Student learning targets for each Topic

– Which snapshot assessment to use and when to use it

– Ideas on problem-solving assessment tasks outside the curriculum (with links!)

– For grades 3-5, embedded examples of Smarter Balanced items that correspond with each Module

You can preview and download the PDF for your whole year at EngageNY compacted pacing guide (click on the green “planning and assessment” button once you choose your grade level).


Snapshot Assessments

We have also collected all of their snapshot assessments (again, click on the green “planning and assessment” button once you choose your grade level) and put them in a zip file so you can download all the snapshots for your year in one click!  As we said before, we love these one-page standards-based quizzes for their use in formative assessments, reteaching, or for progress monitoring.  Federal Way has organized them by EngageNY Module, but because they are standards-based, they are a great complement to any curriculum!

We hope your year is getting off to a good start.  Let us know what else you’d like to see and we may pull together a future blog post just for you!


EngageNY and the Personal Whiteboard (Part three of a three-part series)


If you have been using any component of EngageNY’s K-5 math curriculum, A Story of Units, there is no question that you’ve had to copy and/or produce a variety of classroom tools and resources for you and your students.  While our last two posts directed you towards suggestions for planning, assessment, and homework, today’s entry is all about students and the personal whiteboard. We are highlighting some of our best discoveries and creations below, and you can find them – plus many more – at the EngageNY support section of our website,  Click on your grade level, and then choose the blue button labeled “Classroom Tools.”  Check back often as we are always adding new free downloads!

The Personal Whiteboard

Almost every lesson in EngageNY recommends students use a “personal whiteboard.”  While many of us have actual board-like student-size whiteboard sets in our classrooms, those are not always the best choice for maximizing the ideas in the curriculum.  EngageNY suggests that you use clear sheet protectors so that students can slip blank templates in and out, thus saving on copies and also giving students clear scaffolding for their work.

After some initial disappointing results with cheaper, thinner sheet protectors, we have found our favorite:  Avery Top Load Clear Vinyl Envelopes (product number 74804).  They come in packs of 10 for about $9 per pack.  These are sturdy, crystal clear, and don’t crinkle when students erase. A small investment in these, plus thin-tipped Expo markers and a piece of fleece cut into squares for erasers, will provide your students an excellent way to practice the different EngageNY models.

A few teacher tips we’ve picked up for whiteboard management:

  • At the beginning of the year, label the Expo pens and caps with student names. It’s amazing how much better our young friends take care of the marker and accompanying cap when it becomes “their” property!
  • Slice the tops off of manila file folders (we like to find the stack of used ones in the staff room, since you’re cutting the tops off anyway) and leave them inside the Avery vinyl envelopes. Students can collect templates there, and it also provides a little extra stiffness for the board.
  • Copy templates you use often on different colored papers. This way, it’s easier for students to find.  “Please put your green number bond template on one side of your board and leave the other side blank.”

Templates to go with that personal whiteboard

Whenever EngageNY asks you to use a certain template in the whiteboard, you may or may not be able to find it easily in your teacher’s guide.  Quite often, blackline templates appear the first time they’re needed, and then it’s up to you to keep a copy on hand (easy to do if students keep them in the whiteboard).  Sometimes, just knowing that fact at the beginning of the year can save a lot of time later on!

Many of the popular templates for EngageNY, such as the number bonds and place value charts, are used so often that we have found it’s handy to have different versions of them so that students can practice using them in a variety of ways.  To that end, we have created a variety of printable templates for you to download and use with your personal whiteboards (once you click on the link, choose your grade level and select the blue button labeled “Classroom Tools.”)

One of our favorite go-to resources for the personal whiteboard is this series we created that allows students to put together numbers to ten (and twenty, on a separate download) using a ten frame, number bond, and equation.  On each page of the download, the equation provides less structure, increasing students’ responsibility for selecting and placing the proper symbols.



There are so many other things we want to share about the “Classroom Tools” section of our grade-level EngageNY support pages, it’s become clear that this three-part series will definitely expand to some more parts in the near future!  In the meantime, please let us know what additional templates or supports you’d like to see for EngageNY…you are probably not alone, and we love to help!

You Are Not Alone: Planning Your Year With EngageNY (The first of a three-part series)

The EngageNY math curriculum for K-5, A Story of Units, has become extraordinarily popular due to its strong focus on conceptual development, value (free is a very good price), and online availability.  But as with all new materials, it takes time to find what works for you, your students, and your district.

In the hopes of saving you a little bit of that time, we here at CCSS Math Activities have collected some of our favorite EngageNY resources from around the U.S.  This is the first of a series of posts about those resources and how we like to use them!


Need to figure out how to squeeze 180-day EngageNY curriculum into your school year, and include time for assemblies, field trips, snow days, and even some reteaching?  A team at Federal Way Public Schools in Federal Way, Washington created a compacted pacing guide (click on the green “planning and assessment” button once you choose your grade level) that provides suggestions for which lessons can be combined or omitted.  We really like that they included the reasoning for their recommendations, which allows you to make the final decisions for yourself!


Also from Federal Way comes a collection of CCSS-aligned “Snapshot Assessments” (again, click on the green “planning and assessment” button once you choose your grade level) that they have organized by standard within each EngageNY module.  Teachers we have worked with use these assessments to fill a variety of needs, including using them as:

  • Common formative assessments for data team/PLC discussion
  • Quizzes for grading purposes
  • Additional practice problems for reteaching or review

Have you used the Snapshots in a different way?  Let us know so others can benefit from your experience!