The Daily Dos is our "warm-up" to begin class. There are two questions daily (hence the Spanish word "Dos"-- my attempt at being creative--!!) Anyway, they are review questions from either the previous day's lesson, from prior chapters, or from previous years. The students have 5 minutes to complete these two problems as they are review questions—questions the students should already be able to answer. They are never over concepts that have not been introduced. For some reason, many students tend to struggle with the Daily Dos, which is perplexing because, again, they are review questions. Every sixth grade math teacher does a similar type of “warm-up” activity to begin class. I, however, only give two problems where the other teachers are giving five. I reduced the number from 5 to 2 because many kids got flustered/frustrated trying to complete 5 questions in 5 minutes. However, we all believe these warm-ups are extremely beneficial as reviewing concepts and practicing time management skills are crucial in preparing the kids for ISTEP.
When I pass out the Daily Dos sheets, the kids are to keep this paper in the “VIP” section of their math folder all week so that they can complete the warm-up each day and then turn in the entire page when all 10 questions have been answered. The class is divided into teams of “nerds” and “geeks.” Each team can earn daily points depending on which team has the most people with the correct answer; however, the nerds and geeks competition has nothing to do with each child's individual grade. There are 10 points weekly so kids can earn anywhere from 10%-100% as a homework grade. Just a reminder that homework is only 10% of their entire report card grade while tests and quizzes are weighted heavier and are 90% of their report card grade. So, the more assignments that are given, the percentage for an assignment like a Daily Dos weighs a very minimal amount.
Finally, if a student is absent, it is his responsibility to complete the Daily Dos upon his return. If a student loses his Daily Dos paper, he loses the points that had been accumulated up until that day. The student may, however, complete the rest of the week's problems on a piece of notebook paper, and can even turn a late paper in on the following day for 20% off.