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Cotopaxi Consolidated Schools, Cotopaxi School District Fremont RE-3
Grade(s): K - 12
Scenario: Computers in Classroom
Purpose: Enrichment/Gifted and Talented
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 40-50%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 2-3 hours per week, 270 hours per term
Nancy Oswald, Teacher and Gifted/Talented Representative
I use ALEKS for math enrichment for the gifted students in my classroom. Both of my gifted students have excelled in math and have done very well on the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) tests.
How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
2-3 days per week.
What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
No, because I use ALEKS to supplement the curriculum for gifted students.
How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
Since I do curriculum compacting and pre-test with my gifted students, this can really vary. If I feel a class lesson is one a student would benefit from, he stays with the whole group. If not, he is assigned to work on ALEKS as an individual assignment.
How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
I haven't modified it much.
How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
Students know that ALEKS is available to them, but to my knowledge, they do not use it. I think it would need to be assigned as homework for this to happen. I don't do this because I think my students benefit more from doing some of the class homework and being part of the regular class for social reasons.
Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
Instead of mandating progress, I encourage students to write down daily goals and try to achieve them. In my situation, this works well. I monitor progress and check in with students to give feedback and to make sure progress is being made.
Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
I have seen progress in math on both the middle of the year and end of the year NWEA testing. Students are now scoring in the Advanced range. I think students are satisfied and happy with their progress.
Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
I think my use may be out of the ordinary, but having the students set goals and chart their own progress makes sense to me. I think you can take that beyond what I do by having students graph or record their own progress in another format, and keep folders that combine goal-setting with actual progress being made.