View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
Cedar Manor Intermediate School, Saint Louis Park Public Schools
Saint Louis Park, MN
Grade(s): 4 - 6
Scenario: Computer Lab, Home Access
Purpose: Intervention, Enrichment/Gifted and Talented, Special Education, Improve State Test Scores
Time Spent in ALEKS: 4-5 hours per week, 65 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Mathematics - LV 3 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 4 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 5 (with QuickTables), RtI 7, RtI 8, Middle School Math Course 2
Freida Bailey, Principal
I have used the program at our school for three years, and each year we see amazing results. The teachers and I examine the data and compare them to the state assessment to correlate information. This year we incorporated the program into our Response to Intervention model and are noticing how easy it is to implement.
What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
Meeting the needs of students above and below grade level. There was not enough time in the schedule to implement the necessary scaffolding needed for students to become successful.
How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
3-4 days per week.
What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
How do you implement ALEKS?
After analyzing various data points and receiving teacher input, students that would receive Title 1 and other targeted services, or are Gifted, ELL, and Special Education would be placed in the program first.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
The topics are taught in a specific order for Gifted students, but for others, the artificial intelligence tutors students on skills missed.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
The students access the program anytime and receive points, but the majority stay either after school or attend Saturday school.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
For some students, the skills were taught using a teacher as a pacing guide. This was done to ensure certain skills or content was taught before the state assessments.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
Encouragement is given to all students. A letter is sent to the parents explaining the program and suggesting time to use the program outside of school hours.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
We have special parent events when students explain their pie and how the program works.
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?
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
Teachers are given the opportunity to decide. However, the majority only use the program to fill in missing content.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Students are monitored each month, and the progress is tracked based upon hours and assessment results.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
The largest progress we have noticed are with students who are receiving special services, such as English Language Learners (ELL), Special Education, and Gifted and Talented. The students are able to access information at their level. Because we use ALEKS through extended services, we are able to survey students, and the majority of them have stated how much they enjoy working with the program.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Besides the monitoring of the content, the students love to communicate with their teacher via email. Sending encouraging words or answering questions for each student is a great motivator. Parents love reading the emails as well.