View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
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Bear Creek High School, Jefferson County Public Schools
Grade(s): 9 - 12
Scenario: Computers in Classroom, Laptop Carts
Purpose: Credit Recovery
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 100%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 5 hours per week
ALEKS Course: Algebra 1
Heather Killeen, Teacher
It is amazing to see students' growth; it is exponential. I love seeing their confidence build too. Students have gained over a year's worth of growth in a very short amount of time. They LOVE to see their pie chart grow and grow and grow! I have had the best experience with ALEKS.
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?
Credit recovery class.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
No, they have the freedom to go where they need or want to go. It gives them a sense of power on a subject they often feel powerless.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
Students come in, grab a computer, and work quietly on their own. When they don't understand the explanations, I tutor one-on-one. I use the Time and Topic report A LOT! If they are struggling, I go to help them specifically. At the end of the assessments I go through it with them and discuss the ones they missed (I LOVE that feature). It really boosts their confidence, because many times it is a very small mistake.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
My teaching is completely different because it is a credit recovery class; they can specifically work on what they don't understand.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
I state that it is available at the beginning of the semester. When kids are way behind I strongly encourage them, and then make a call to home if they are not up to speed.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
Haven't gotten that far yet, only when they are very behind.
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?
ALEKS is the whole course.
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
I go by how many topics they accomplish.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
It's tough, because as the material gets harder, it becomes harder to accomplish as many topics.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
Students have gained over a year's worth of growth in a very short amount of time. They LOVE to see their pie chart grow and grow and grow!
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Go over the assessments with them one-on-one. See what topics they are ready for, and do a mini lesson to those specific students. Many of the reports are extremely helpful.