Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

Always, Sometimes, or Never True

K20 Center | Published: September 16th, 2020 by K20 Center


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Always, Sometimes, or Never True

Students evaluate statements for how often they are true, which is especially useful in revealing whether they overgeneralize or under-generalize a given concept.

Always, Sometimes, or Never True


Students examine a set of statements, reflect on their individual interpretations of each, and decide if they are always, sometimes, or never true. This strategy can be used in a variety of ways, both at the beginning of a learning cycle to elicit prior knowledge or to check for understanding after participants have had opportunities to learn about a topic. 


  1. Students read a set of statements that focus on the instructional concept/topic. For each one, they choose the answer that best describes how often the statement is true: always, sometimes, or never.

  2. After each answer, students write a short justification regarding their response.

  3. As an optional end to this activity, students can participate in a whole-class discussion or share out their responses. If used at the end of a lesson, students can, instead, finish by turning their responses in as an assessment.

Keeley, P., & Tobey, C. R. (2011). Get the facts. In Mathematics Formative Assessment: 75 Practical Strategies for Linking Assessment, Instruction, and Learning (pp. 57-59). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin, SAGE.