Winfield Elementary School

May 19, 2023 by Anita Reid

School of Distinction Award

Small Groups for Big Gains
Winfield City Schools

Principal, Mrs. Mallory Long

Superintendent, Mr. Randy Thomley

At the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year, 89% of students at Winfield Elementary were at least one grade level behind in mathematics. Therefore, the need for explicit, small group instruction, emphasizing conceptual learning, "Small Groups for Big Gains," was developed to address deficits across all domains. Specifically, small group instruction was the chosen focus due to the high student achievement witnessed by the mathematics instructional coach from her experience as a classroom teacher. The collaborative instructional process aimed for classroom teachers to meet regularly to discuss and develop adequate instructional strategies, align content standards with the curriculum, and incorporate manipulatives to enhance conceptual understanding and close achievement gaps. Also, a kinesthetic approach to building fluency took place by integrating mathematics into physical education, which increased student engagement. Combining focus, coherence, and rigor changed the trajectory of instruction at Winfield Elementary. After one year of implementing "Small Groups for Big Gains," 80% of students displayed improvement. 72% of students were on grade level, and 60% met their typical growth goal as evidenced by the school-wide diagnostic assessment. Winfield students excitedly recited the motto, "WES likes small groups and cannot lie. Closing learning gaps you can't deny. When a student walks in with a smile on their face and a test they did ace, WES gets PUMPED!"