ALEKS - Assessment and Learning

Implementation Strategies

View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes. 

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One World Middle School, New York City Geographic District #11
Bronx, NY

Grade(s): 6 - 7
Scenario: Laptop Carts
Purpose: Supplement
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 20%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 2 hours per week, 30 hours per term

Michelle James, Teacher
This program is phenomenal. ALEKS provides me with the opportunity to facilitate learning in the truest sense. It caters to the individual needs of my students by giving each student exactly what they need. Differentiation is really happening in my classroom because of ALEKS.


Scenario

What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
One size does not fit all, and being able to cater to the individual needs of every student during each lesson was almost impossible. This has become a reality with ALEKS.

How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
3 days per week.

What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
40 minutes.


Implementation

How do you implement ALEKS?
I introduce ALEKS to my students as a tool that is unique because it caters to each one of them and them alone at any given time. My students always smile when I tell them that no two screens in the classroom will ever have the same thing because they are all unique and have different needs. They actually walk around just to check!

Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
I follow my school's curriculum map, so the ALEKS topics are covered randomly.

How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
I usually have a double period for math. The first period is direct instruction and the second period is for differentiation; this is when students use ALEKS.

How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
I have modified my small group instruction because I am able to clarify many more misconceptions while they are still learning other skills on ALEKS. It's like having a teacher in the room for every student.

How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
Students work on ALEKS every night for an hour.

How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
Once every quarter, I conduct parent workshops on how to use the program with their child at home.


Grading

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. Homework accounts for ten percent of their grade, and using ALEKS at home gives students five percent of that homework grade.

How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
ALEKS is five percent of their ten percent homework grade. I also use the assessments in ALEKS to drive my instruction.

Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Yes, they are responsible for making as much progress as possible to fill in their pie slices. Students are given the opportunity to showcase their ALEKS progress as an incentive.


Learning Outcomes

Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
My students' scores have definitely improved. They are working on skills that they need to build on so their content base is widened. Students just love ALEKS. They check their pie constantly to see their growth. They get really anxious about mastering skills so it can be reflected in their reports.


Best Practices

Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
Use ALEKS as much as you can with your students.