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Wesley Lakes Elementary School, Henry County Schools
Grade(s): K - 5
Scenario: Computer Lab
Purpose: Special Education, Supplement
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 50%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 3.5 hours per week
ALEKS Course: Mathematics - LV 4 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 5 (with QuickTables)
Linda Williams, Special Education Teacher
I found ALEKS to be an extremely helpful tool for both the students and myself because of the detailed explanations it gives to solving problems. What I like a lot is that you can sometimes get an additional explanation, since there is more than one way to arrive at the solution to a problem.
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?
How do you implement ALEKS?
We have time set aside at the beginning of each day. Students meet in the computer lab to work on QuickTables before school, and then they have their resource math using ALEKS.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
We started working on the pie chart in order, but changed it to match the skills the students would be learning in the general education setting. This way they get their feet wet prior to the rest of the class.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
We have the students work on a skill, and use manipulatives and give mini-lessons when needed, which is usually once or twice a week. Individual students might need more one-on-one attention to be able to master skills.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
This is not required but is encouraged.
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
I use worksheets. 50 percent/50 percent with the general class grades.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Yes. We set a weekly goal and chart it on the student's graph in his or her notebook. Students log in their number of topics daily so they can see how they are doing in terms of meeting their weekly goal. Progress increased when the graphs were implemented.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
I have seen math fact skills increase, and I have seen students gain a better understanding of math concepts. We have been charting students' progress on a weekly basis and providing rewards for goals met. Seeing their charted progress at the end of the week has been helpful in goal-setting.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Use manipulatives along with ALEKS. Monitor time on topic, and encourage students to work on each skill until they master it, rather than click through all of the pie chart.