I just finished grading the math test we gave yesterday at the end of the first 3rd weeks. This was a short, 5-question test that covered a few pretty basic topics that we've been going over. One question was about place value, one was expanded form, one was word form, one was a number pattern, and one was completing a piece of a hundreds chart.
Overall, I can't be too displeased with the grades. There were several 100s, which is always nice. I made a HUGE deal while monitoring the test about how I would be taking off points if work was not shown. We've talked about making place value charts, displaying the rule for a number pattern, etc. I did have to CONSTANTLY remind certain kids of this possible point deduction throughout the course of the test, but it does seem to have sunk in with several of the kids. Nobody made a 100 who didn't display their thinking and work.
Usually, at the beginning of the year, getting the kids to show their work is like pulling teeth or catching a leprechaun. VERY difficult and arduous. It's been no different this year. The homework situation has NOT been pretty. But this test I graded shows me that the tide IS turning.
That's always a positive note.