Tuesday, November 13, 2007

ALEKS - Middle School Usage

The three hour free trial over a 48 hour period allows all students to be tested and progress in Math recorded. It is useful to follow these directions:

1. Sign up the students before class. It takes about one to two minutes per student to do this. During sign-up, record the user name, eg Guest465232, and rewrite the password to a standard one (this will save time), such as newport. Write a teacher's email address in the sign-up. The "marketing" box should be K-12, and it is strongly suggested that "Essential Math" be chosen as the evaluation.

2. Usually a student will complete an assessment within an hour, but two class periods should be scheduled.

3. Essential Math is a strong pre-Algebra program (for the good old days of 8th grade pre-Algebra). By starting in seventh grade, real progress can be recorded. The only decision is whether to take the initial score or allow three hours. Both approaches work well, but give different results. Three hour results show dedication and responsiveness under stress. This is a math skill.

4. Obviously, scores and possibly category scores, need to be recorded in a spreadsheet or database. It is important to record the score before the three hour period is completed; otherwise the data isn't available.

5. This isn't a rip-off of ALEKS Corporation. Students frequently ask to stay on ALEK afterwards. Many feel (correctly), they are accomplishing something.

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