View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
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Pacific Coast Charter School, Pajaro Valley Unified School District
Grade(s): K - 12
Scenario: Computer Lab, Laptop Carts, Home Access
Purpose: Intervention, Enrichment/Gifted and Talented, Special Education, Improve State Test Scores
Time Spent in ALEKS: 0.5-1 hour per week
ALEKS Course: Mathematics - LV 3 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 4 (with QuickTables), Mathematics - LV 5 (with QuickTables), Middle School Math Course 2, Middle School Math Course 3, Foundations of High School Math, Algebra 1, High School Geometry, Algebra 2, PreCalculus, Trigonometry
Heidi Fonseca, Teacher
ALEKS provides both the opportunity to acquire missing skills and the ability to move ahead. The division of the pie into slices is a very useful visual for students, parents, and teachers. It allows an instant view of a student's progress.
What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
Reaching each individual student and moving each student along from a given point forward.
How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
1 day per week.
What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
How do you implement ALEKS?
I started by explaining to parents and students how ALEKS works. I then gave the parents documents regarding how to use the program. Before we began class use of ALEKS, I met with each student individually to make sure they will be comfortable using the program.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
No, I like the limited access to topics until pre-requisite skills have been mastered.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
Varies, depending on the task at hand. ALEKS is used for practice during the first or last 30 minutes of the block. Scheduled assessments always occur at the start of class. Worksheets are used as homework.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
I have used other programs to supplement/enrich instruction. I replaced them with ALEKS. In addition, individual tutoring sessions happen as needed by the student.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
As often as possible.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
I ask students to share their pie with their parents, and ask parents to follow-up/monitor student progress. I also include parents in the task of correcting worksheets.
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?
It makes up about a quarter of the total homework load.
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
I average all activities, giving ALEKS equal weight as any other category.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
It depends on the needs/gifts of the student.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
The learning outcomes of my students have been more than satisfactory. Those consistently adhering to a schedule have been very successful in attaining their goals. In addition, the students are very happy. Every completed slice is a cause for celebration.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Involve parents and other colleagues, as well as administration. Our principal has been very supportive of our ALEKS implementation, and happy parents have shared their experiences with other parents.