View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes.
Antioch Middle School, Shawnee Mission School District
Overland Park, KS
Grade(s): 7 - 8
Scenario: Computer Lab, Laptop Carts
Purpose: Improve State Test Scores
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 50%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 2.5 hours per week
ALEKS Course: Pre-Algebra
Salena Orr, Teacher
Students who take it seriously have improved scores across the board. As we know, students don't always take things seriously, and when they are required to work on ALEKS every day, they begin to get bored and don't take their work seriously.
What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
We were unable to make AYP for two years. It was found last year that students who used ALEKS almost daily had improved test scores.
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?
We spend 45 minutes each day in the computer lab working on ALEKS. I aligned the program with our textbook and used it to reinforce what we were learning in the classroom.
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
Yes, as they align with our textbook.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
There is 45 minutes of direct class instruction, and then 45 minutes in ALEKS.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
It is encouraged weekly, but not required as not all students have Internet access at home.
How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
It is mentioned to parents that ALEKS is part of their child's grade and any time they can work on it at home is helpful.
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?
Students get one point for each topic they complete in their ALEKS pie. Students are required to get 10 points each week. Anything they do over 10 points is extra credit. This accounts for approximately 10-15 percent of their total grade.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Students need to complete 10 objectives per week.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
I am a first-year teacher, so I don't have anything to compare it to. However, I have heard that our test scores have improved for the students that are using the program effectively. Students get excited when they finally get a piece of their pie completed.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Have a reward system. Since we are in the computer lab, I like to allow those students that reach the 10 point goal about 15 minutes of free game time on Fridays.