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Blending Middle School: A Powerful Time For Math Education

Middle school is a time of development, discovery and transition for students - but also an exciting and powerful time for math education. Tom Vander Ark of Getting Smart will share his research and findings around successful implementations of blended learning in middle schools across the nation, as well as lessons learned. Elementary math often provides a level of instant gratification—you see the problem, you know the answer. In middle school, the math starts to get more complex, building connections among content. We need to help students practice patience, use a variety of solving techniques to attack problems, and learn from their mistakes in order to persist through difficult math situations rather than simply giving up. Attend this web seminar to learn how to motivate students to succeed with competency-based learning, build persistence through learning that is student-driven, and equip schools for learning that happens anytime, anywhere.

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Blending Middle School: A Powerful Time For Math Education

  1. 1. BLENDING MIDDLE SCHOOL A POWERFUL TIME FOR MATH EDUCATION Tom Vander Ark, Getting Smart CEO With support from DreamBox Learning
  2. 2. Today’s Webinar  Overview of Blended Learning  Why Blended Models Work in the Middle Grades  10 Lessons Learned from Middle Grade Math Blends School Wide Data Alignment Management Motivation Support Tech Support Start Whole Group Portfolio Blend Flexibility
  3. 3. What is Blended Learning? Christensen: Students learn at least in part through online delivery of content and instruction with some element of control over time, place, path, and/or pace. Getting Smart: A shift to an online delivery for a portion of the day to make students, teachers and schools more productive.
  4. 4. Middle School Landscape What we know about middle school students:  Encountering physical and emotional changes  Experiencing more complex mathematics  Increased social awareness  Desire for independence
  5. 5. Middle School Landscape What we know about middle grade math  Indicator of success in more advanced math  Shift from learning the number system to a thoughtful use of that system  Connections and conversations are key
  6. 6. Why Blended Works for Middle School Its Personalized • Meets the unique needs of learners and creats independent opportunities for success and growth Its Competency-Based • Increases student confidence and independence by focusing on growth mindset and allowing individual progression based solely on competency It Builds Persistence • Offers opportunities for students to learn through productive failure and at their own pace It Can Be Social • Allows for flexible learning environments that open the door for peer tutoring and whole class conversation
  7. 7. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends SCHOOL WIDE– blended learning is a team sport and requires a shared vision  KIPP: suggests leaders start school wide conversations around instructional design and school model design
  8. 8. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends DATA – blended learning provides a wealth of information for both teachers and students  Teachers: benefit from synthesized, actionable data  Students: benefit from direct feedback and vision of growth
  9. 9. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends ALIGNMENT – aligned programs seek to calibrate difficulty – between frustration and boredom. What Tim Hudson of DreamBox Learning calls “appropriate scaffolding – strategic social interactions, learning experiences, and instruction based on a students past performance, intuition, and current thinking – that guide effective learning and development.” Blended Learning Implementation Guide 2.0 from Digital Learning Now
  10. 10. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends MANAGEMENT – determine a plan for what will be needed in order to manage the new classroom structure  KIPP Chicago: strong classroom procedures and management  Alliance: digital learning agendas
  11. 11. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends MOTIVATION – support the development and realization of goals as well as the need to solve difficult problems  Firstline Schools: Goal setting  Khan: goals, reflection, accountability
  12. 12. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends SUPPORT – teachers should be sufficiently trained on acting on data from programs and on creating systems/processes required for streamlined procurement and data integration
  13. 13. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends TECH SUPPORT – be aware that with any technology you will encounter difficulties. It is important to good tech support and a classroom culture of support and collaboration around trouble shooting
  14. 14. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends START WHOLE GROUP – it can be difficult for students to learn a new program and new content at the same time.  Beginning with all group instruction  Initial practice with content that has been previously mastered
  15. 15. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends PORTFOLIO BLEND –develop a portfolio approach to content that allows student input into what helps them succeed and why
  16. 16. Lessons Learned from Middle Math Blends BE FLEXIBLE – take an iterative approach: develop and test hypothesis on short cycles  Seek inspiration  NGLC  Blended Learning Universe  Sweat the culture as much as the design  Be good to each other
  17. 17. Q & A Continue the conversation: GettingSmart.com @Getting_Smart @Tvanderark
  18. 18. DreamBox Learning K-8 Math Intelligent Adaptive Learning™ Engine • Millions of personalized learning paths • Tailored to a student’s unique needs Motivating Learning Environments • Student Directed, Empowering • Leverages Gaming Protocols Rigorous Mathematics Curriculum • Reporting Aligned to CCSS, Texas TEKS, Virginia SOL, Canada WNCP, & Canada Ontario Curriculum Reports • Standards for Mathematical Practice Seeing is believing! dreambox.com/request-a-demo
  19. 19. DreamBox Lessons & Virtual Manipulatives Intelligently adapt & individualize to: • Students’ own intuitive strategies • Kinds of mistakes • Efficiency of strategy • Scaffolding needed • Response time Seeing is believing! dreambox.com/request-a-demo
  20. 20. Robust Reporting Seeing is believing! dreambox.com/request-a-demo
  21. 21. Strong Support for Differentiation Seeing is believing! dreambox.com/request-a-demo
  22. 22. FREE Interactive Whiteboard Lessons DreamBox supports small group and whole class instructional resources. www.dreambox.com/teachertools Seeing is believing! dreambox.com/request-a-demo
  23. 23. Seeing is believing! www.dreambox.com/request-a-demo

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