ALEKS - Assessment and Learning

Implementation Strategies

View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes. 

Submit your ALEKS implementation strategy by completing our online survey.

Indian Orchard Elementary School, Springfield Public Schools
Springfield, MA

Grade(s): K - 5
Scenario: Computers in Classroom
Purpose: Special Education, Improve State Test Scores
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 20%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 1-2 hours per week, 21 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Mathematics - LV 3 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 4 (with QuickTables)

Heather Twining, Special Education Teacher
I have been using the ALEKS program in my third through fifth grade special education classroom. Although students have to put more effort into the ALEKS program, they do enjoy working on it every day. I personally like the ALEKS program because the problems correlate to the Massachusetts curriculum. I also like that it is preparing my students for the math portion of the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) test.


Scenario

What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
It has been hard for our school to hit all of the math chapters by the end of the school year, especially with all of the snow days. The ALEKS program has been helpful in hitting those areas that we can't fully get to in class. For example, fractions and measurement are not taught yet, but they can get some of that experience with the ALEKS program.

How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
5 days per week.

What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
20 minutes.


Implementation

How do you implement ALEKS?
I have had the students work daily on their grade level using the guidelines that correlate to the textbook we use.

Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
No, I use ALEKS as an extra tool for students to review or learn specific concepts.

How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
After we complete our regular math instruction, students then go on the ALEKS program for 20 minutes.

How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
I have not.

How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
I have not had them work from home this year.


Grading

Is ALEKS assigned to your students as all or part of their homework responsibilities? If so, what part of the total homework load is it?
Not this year.

How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
We have not used ALEKS to assign grades, but will do so next year.

Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Not this year.


Learning Outcomes

Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
Since we have started using the ALEKS program, I have noticed the students' math chapter test scores improving. The students enjoy making progress on their individual pie chart.


Best Practices

Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
I have noticed that my students are more at ease when they can click on the Explain button to see how the problem is solved. This really helps them better understand why they are getting it wrong. It is much more effective when they can see the process and not just that they got it wrong.