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In EdSurge Case Studies, educators share their real-life experiences with edtech in their schools and classrooms.
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Douglas
7th Grade Math teacher, Sacramento City Unified School District, California
Blended learning classroom, Special education students, High ELL population, and Low income population

How to target student that had gaps in their the math education and bring up lower performing student to more readily access grade level material in middle school.

Product Use: I used this product as a supplement to the student's current math class in an attempt to fill gaps in the student's mathematical knowledge. The students had an Ipass class as well as their regular math class. The students work on the skills specific to their individual needs and gaps that needed to be filled in the iPass class. I was able to do this thanks to the design of the program.

What Worked and What Didn't: It worked great for being able to work on and assist the students with what they specifically need to work on. This was not possible before. There was no loss of learning when a substitute teacher was needed. The students were able to work seemlessly. The data showed that they definitely improved their state test scores.

The drawback that I saw was that the teacher was not able control certain aspects of the program.

Age Group: Middle school students

Nov 7, 2020 Provide Feedback
Anonymous
iLearn and Odysseyware high school teacher, certified in Math, English, Reading, and Special Education, Georgia
Special education students and Low income population

Many students have math deficits and are working well below their grade level. Some of the high school students are working on third and fourth grade levels.

Product Use: Students come to my class for 45 - 90 minutes per school day to work on iLearn Math. These students work independently at their own pace. The teacher oversees their work and progress. The teacher also aids the student when they receive a flag that indicates they are struggling on a particular lesson and need further intervention.

What Worked and What Didn't: iLearn Math has worked well for my students. There are a few lessons that need further clarification for the students about the visual aids. For example, the students are not told why boxes are placed in the order shown. This makes it harder for them to complete the work on their own.

Age Group: High school students

Nov 6, 2020 Provide Feedback
Anonymous
Assistant Principal, Georgia
1:1 devices and Low income population

We needed a program that would identify math deficits, provide individual instruction on the weakness, and then assess student understanding. We also needed an instructional tool that would provide individual enrichment opportunities.

Product Use: -School-wide math screener (Multi-grade diagnostic)

-Intervention (MTSS/RTI)
Tier 1 - All students performing below grade level are required to have 1.5 hours per month in the program
Tier 2 - Connections class (2-6th grade classes, 2-7th grade classes, and 2-8th grade classes)
Tier 3 - Breakfast Buddies and Lunch Bunch
Progress Monitoring

-Remediation - iLean is used on an individual basis to remediate skill deficits, in order to gain proficiency of grade level curriculum

-Enrichment - iLearn is used on an individual bases to enrichment students that have already mastered grade level standards

-Classroom Differentiation - iLearn allows teachers to determine where students are performing individually and specifically target areas of weakness or strengths

-Classroom Instructional Resource - Assignments are assigned based on standards being taught in the classroom

What Worked and What Didn't: What Worked
- Diagnostic Screener
-Identifying Areas of Weakness
-Enrichment Opportunities
-Think Fast (Was removed this year and for was a beneficial resource for basic recall of math facts)
-Questions are not multiple chocie

What Did Not Work
-Placement of students is not always accurate. If a student did not take the placement assessment seriously, they were placed in a much lower level.
Therefore, the remediation of their true skill deficit may not be addressed.
-Administrative Access being taken away at the school level. Administrators, Instructional Coach, and Interventionist do not have access to needed data and
student information. Unable to remove or move students from teacher rosters when and if needed.
-Assigning Assessments/ MGD- currently if we have a new student that enrolls and the MGD is assigned to them, it not only assigns it to the new student but re-assigns it to all students who have already taken the MGD. Therefore, all students have the ability to retake the MGD and their current screener score could be deleted.
-Students are not mastering concepts that are identified as areas of weakness. Each year, students return to the same areas that have previously been identified as weaknesses . There performance on these concepts never seems to improve based on data provided by the program.
-The videos sometimes get stuck on a loop and students cannot get past them.
-The videos are not engaging and do not maintain student attention.
-The videos do not count towards student time in the program.
-Provided assignments do not always match the grade level curriculum or Georgia standards.
-Sometimes the drop down menu answer choices (ex: choosing the correct units) do not show all choices and therefore students cannot click on the correct choice.
-Students get stuck in a unit and cannot move on. It would make more sense to flag it to come back to later if they have tried that unit more than once already. This discourages the students from wanting to work on the program at all.
-When answering questions, many times iLearn requires it in a certain way and does not take into account others ways of writing/solving the problem (Slope y-intercept form, comparing rates)
-Some of the questions do not have correct answers which causes students to not pass the chapter quiz which then makes them go through a chapter they already know how to do.
-Questions are completed by some students so many times that they memorize the answers (question bank may be too small).
-Students need access to a calculator once they reach concepts that allow for a calculator in their current grade.

Age Group: Middle school students

Nov 5, 2020 Provide Feedback
Celisa Edwards
7th Grade Math Teacher, Dacula Middle School, Georgia
1:1 devices, Bring your own devices (BYOD), Project-based classroom, Blended learning classroom, and Low income population

As a 7th grade math teacher, I was faced with students entering my class with severe foundational math skill gaps. Ensuring students met both the local, district, and state standards became increasingly difficult due to the diversity of the gaps. It was evident that I needed an individualized remediation program that would identify and address each student’s gaps and work parallel to me in preparing the students for a successful educational mathematical experience. Because students had such foundational gaps in their learning, it naturally raised their affective filter which posed another problem...how do I motive and encourage math learning. It became critical to find not only a product that addressed the gaps, but made learning math fun while scaffolding the instruction as to not create frustration. iPass was the product that solved this issue.

Product Use: iPass was the perfect product to not only address the student's foundational gaps, but it also became my teaching partner! I used iPass at the beginning of each math class and then rolled into my 7th grade curriculum. The implementation of the product was very simple and successful. With one placement test, each student's gaps were identified and foundational content was assigned. As the students progressed through the learning tasks, they had opportunities to earn badges, jewels, and avatars which made the learning fun for the students. As students gaps were filled, there was a notable increase in their self-confidence in working through mathematical scenarios during my "on level" lessons. In addition to using the iPass as a remediation tool, I also was able to assign on level iPass tasks to reinforce my lessons as well as assign additional enrichment iPass lesson for the students who were mastering the 7th grade content. The iPass program was a perfect one stop shop for remediation, reinforcement, and enrichment.

What Worked and What Didn't: Commitment and consistency with the iPass program is simply what worked. Ensuring that the students had the opportunity on a regular basis to learn and practice math concepts tailored to their specific needs proved to be a pivotal point in their math education. Students who placed with gaps in the 2nd and 3rd grade math level moved at a steady rate to reach their targeted 7th grade level. The students demonstrated their success by going from the lowest scoring class in 7th grade (pre-test) to out performing every other 7th grade math class on the final exam by greater than 7%! What didn't work was simply the ineffective implementation that sometime happened as a result of me, the teacher, feeling rushed and taking some of the time away from the morning iPass time. Filling student's foundational math skills take time, patience, and a partner. iPass was the perfect partner.

Age Group: Middle school students

Nov 5, 2020 Provide Feedback
Anonymous
Math teacher, California
Special education students, High ELL population, and Low income population

We were experiencing students coming to our school with low basic foundational math skills. Students were struggling and not engaged in their math classes. Differentiated instruction is a key component for student success in any subject, but it can be difficult to incorporate into a classroom. Filling in state standard concept gaps was challenging and frustrating to both teachers and students. As middle school teachers, we teach our students the required state standards, but we also work on preparing them for high school. Too many students fail their freshman math class which puts them behind in credits to graduate on time. We wanted to provide students with solid mathematical skills, a positive math class experience, and grow their confidence.

Product Use: We originally set up 7th grade math intervention classes for students that scored low on the state standardized test. Students that were struggling in their regular math class were also recommended to be placed in these intervention classes. The classes were kept small, between 20-25 students per class. Since iPass is self-paced, students were able to join a class anytime during the year. The teacher monitored the progress of each student and was able to work with small groups or one-on-one with students that were struggling with a concept. These intervention classes only used iPass. Because of budget cuts, we were not able to continue with five periods of intervention classes, so we cut the number of classes to three per semester. These classes were taught using math centers. iPass, Assignments, and VBook were all used as a center. VBook gave students the opportunity to choose concepts they wanted to review, but it also gave them the ability to challenge themselves with learning a new concept on their own. The Assignments allowed the teacher to create an assignment covering the concept currently being taught in a regular math class. The students in the intervention class then had additional practice with support from the teacher.

What Worked and What Didn't: When we were able to have five periods of iPass, we saw 25% of our students move from Far Below and Below to Basic and Proficient. Overall, 43% of the students moved up 1 or 2 proficiency levels. We also saw improvement in students' math grades each quarter. This was exciting for the students to see and experience. They were able to experience being successful in their math class for the first time. The variety of reports offered allowed the teacher to pinpoint areas where students needed additional support. Parents also have access to reports online which allow them to see their child's progress in iPass. iPass gives students the feelings of confidence and success in math.

Age Group: Middle school students

Nov 5, 2020 Provide Feedback
Kristie Long
Student Academic Intervention and Support Specialist , Effingham County Board of Education , Georgia
Special education students and Low income population

Over 10 years ago, the district was identified as being disproportionate by the Georgia Dept. of Education. The district was over identifying students in the MID category. The district invested in iPass as a way to identify math weaknesses in students and provide targeted intervention to close gaps in specific skill areas. Today our district is still using iPass because we discovered iPass targets and addresses the needs of all students. It works well in multiple settings including classrooms and MTSS labs. The program allows teachers to easily differentiate instruction based on the results of the iPass screeners. During the 20/21 school year our district will use the iPass screeners to identify student candidates for our STEM academy. The iLearn Support Team has worked closely with our district to provide reports showing student progress which correlates with the amount of time spent in the iPass program. As a district we are able to measure the effectiveness of the program and we will continue to implement it district wide for all students.

Product Use: Initially the program was used with elementary RTi students in a lab or small group setting. Students were required to work in the program 2 hours a week. As we saw positive effects of iPass, we expanded the availability beyond elementary RTi students.

What Worked and What Didn't: The iPass program worked well to close student skill gaps in math. The Placement Test in iPass allowed students to exempt skills they had already mastered, which in turn expedited students' progress through the program. The iPass program's mastery based instruction ensured students received step by step, consistent instruction in areas of weakness. The biggest barrier was teacher understanding of the process iPass used to teach certain skills.

Age Group: N/A (I am an administrator)

Nov 3, 2020 Provide Feedback
Anonymous
Elementary School Academic Coach, Georgia
1:1 devices, Special education students, and Low income population

We started using iPass, and continue using it to bridge the gap in learning deficits in math. We were looking for a program that would identify and address gaps, as well as accelerate those students who were ready.

Product Use: We use iPass for students to receive individualized instruction targeting their needs. Students are able to fill in their learning gaps through this individualized instruction. This allows students who are below grade level to receive the instruction needed to close the gaps while also allowing higher achievers to continue learning past their grade level. Every student is allowed to feel a sense of accomplishment be earning tokens and trophies along the way. We also you the progress monitoring to access learning goals. In addition to intervention/acceleration, we use iPass to supplement on grade level skills both for whole group instruction and independent practice.

What Worked and What Didn't: What works? The multigrade diagnostic is an extremely beneficial tool that is given beginning, middle, and end of the year. This tool provides a way to show individual student growth as well as gives a way to monitor the specific standard(s) that need to be retaught. The progress monitoring tool is also very helpful, especially for our students in MTSS. We are able to progress monitor students in multiple ways including on grade level and/or at the student's current placement in the program. The ability to create assignments for additional practice is another tool that has worked extremely well for us.

Age Group: Elementary school students

Nov 3, 2020 Provide Feedback
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