View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
Abe Hubert Middle School, Garden City Public Schools
Garden City, KS
Grade(s): 7 - 8
Scenario: Laptop Carts
Purpose: Intervention, Supplement, Improve State Test Scores, At-Risk Students
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 10%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 1 hour per week; 20 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Middle School Math Course 2
Shanna Yox, Teacher
As a teacher, I like that ALEKS provides instant differentiated instruction for each student in the class. The diagnostic test that they take at the beginning makes sure that the students are receiving the instruction that they need. The pie chart graphic is a neat aspect of the program. Each day that the students use ALEKS, I conference with them about their pie chart - what it looks like now, what we want it to look like, how confident they feel in each area, etc. It is a great learning tool.
What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
Most of these students were at risk of failing. They had been unsuccessful in math prior to seventh grade, and were struggling in seventh grade math because they lacked many basic skills.
How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
2 days per week.
What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
How do you implement ALEKS?
ALEKS is used to supplement the curriculum as an intervention for those students lacking basic math skills.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
No, I let the students choose the area that they want to work on, for the most part. When I see major deficiencies in the regular math class, I have students focus on certain areas.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
I use ALEKS as a center in my rotation with my class.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
ALEKS fits right in with how I was already teaching this class. It is easy to make it one of the centers that students rotate through during the week.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
Most of my students do not have Internet or computer access at home. I do make them aware that they could do this from home, but because of the lack of resources, they don't.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
During conferences, I pull up each student's pie chart to show their parents their growth.
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?
No. I only use ALEKS as an in-class activity.
How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
I use ALEKS as a participation grade for this particular class. They have to show a percent of growth every two weeks, and that percentage varies for each student based on skills.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
I have seen many of my students rise closer to grade level on their basic math skills since using ALEKS. Most of the students feel successful when they fill in their pie chart a little bit more each week. That visual graphic for them is an encouragement.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
It is a great differentiated instruction tool.