View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
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Paradigm High School, Independent
South Jordan, UT
Grade(s): 9 - 12
Scenario: Computer Lab
Purpose: At-Risk Students
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 100%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 5.8 hours per week; 116 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Pre-Algebra, Algebra 1, High School Geometry
Troy Henke, Mentor
My overall experience with ALEKS is very good. ALEKS is an effective tool to help students learn math. When students aggressively use ALEKS to learn a subject they make rapid progress.
What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
Many of our students needed more individual attention and we didn't have the staff to accommodate them. ALEKS has been a great way to help these students.
How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
2.5 days per week.
What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
How do you implement ALEKS?
We did not integrate ALEKS into the regular math classes. Rather, we hold ALEKS classes in the computer lab with every student working on their own level of mathematics. One teacher is assigned to monitor the room and assist students as needed.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
The structure is as follows: 10 minutes spent playing the multiplication games in QuickTables, followed by review of updated progress and emails, then work on lessons. Goals are set each week to complete a certain percentage of the pie.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
Our teachers' role in the ALEKS class has become more tutorial than didactical.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
30 minutes each day.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
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?
Yes, it is one-fifth.
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
Our ALEKS classes use the percentage of pie completion as the percent grade. For example, if a student completes 80 percent of the pie, the grade is 80 percent.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Yes, the amount of progress depends on the course, but we generally require about 6 topics of the pie completed per week.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
The students that attacked their work aggressively have made a lot of progress using ALEKS and they have had a wonderful experience. Many of them have asked to enroll in the program the following year. The students that were not interested in making progress in math didn't make a lot of progress; however, QuickTables helped them improve their multiplication skills and many of them liked using ALEKS. We found that this group of students still needed a personal tutor to work with them, not because of ALEKS. The tutor was needed mostly to keep the student attentive to their work and to motive them.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Use the tools! The reports, QuickTables games, and email are wonderfully helpful tools.