Kids that used to leave any worksheet blank are asking for more problems. It has been a fantastic transformation in my class.
The answer is immediate feedback to all students, not only the ones that will raise their hands and ask "is this right," has changed my classroom.
They are working harder and doing more problems; they are trying and building confidence. Why? Because they know immediately if they have the question correct. And they love it. "Can we do this on the computer?" is always asked.
After some confidence is gained there is still so much value in getting them able to do the work on paper. And being able to finish something that they started is so valuable (even with out the feedback.) But getting to that point has been so much more comfortable in my Algebra 1 classroom with the help of the computers and two simple, free, online programs.
The two programs that have been used almost daily in my class are Mangahigh and that quiz. These are fabulous free online programs that can enhance any math class from 2nd grade up to 11th grade. They are both easy to set up and easy to use, and the kids love them!
Let's begin with thatquiz. Thatquiz is a free editable or out of the box system for students to practice math problems while getting immediate feedback (this is changeable for assessments, etc.) I get a grade sheet that is easily exported to excel for grade book integration. Thatquiz has ready-made questions that would be classified as the straight math portion of my math class. All of the problems look the same within a set and gives kids the repeated practice that allows them to see patterns within concepts. But you can also create higher order level thinking problems within thatquiz.
I have daily bell-ringers created and assigned to my students. You can import all of these assignments/quizzes and rename them for your classroom.
Mangahigh is a fantastic learning and gaming system(Mangahigh used to be free, now the games are free, but the rest of the program is now paid.) It works like a charm to motivate students and more importantly gives them number sense. Mangahigh is so well thought out with professional gaming as well as standardized test problems embedded. They demand an understanding of not only what the answer is, but why and it is fantastic for my advanced as well as my "repeater" class.
They even have a group on Edmodo to assist with implementation as well as give feedback and make suggestions. I am so impressed with how quickly they have added quality lessons to meet the standard core. If you would like to try one of the games for yourself, try one of the ones listed here.
- Wrecks Factor - Factor simple and harder quadratics, including quadratics with common factors
- Algebra Meltdown - Linear Equations and Number Machines
- PEMDAS Blaster - P.E.M.D.A.S., The Order of Operations
As schools and classrooms embrace the concept of using computers with students, it is our responsibility to use them for the best benefit of our students. In my classroom, we also use Google docs, GeoGebra, desmos, Kahoot and many other programs to help students understand the concepts, but in the beginning, thatquiz and mangahigh were game changers in my class.
What programs do you use in your classroom? What programs would you like to learn more about? Tell us in the comments below.