Tuesday, September 10, 2013

How DreamBox is Revolutionizing Elementary Math Class

By Sean Scarpiello

As education is quickly being taken over by different technologies, it is often easy for teachers to hand students a computer or tablet and assign work. This holds especially true in subjects such as math, where students who complete more problems and get more experience achieve more. These days, there are many different interactive games and software for students, which are fantastic when it comes to making math fun. However, while some students excel with this type of independent learning, others have a difficult time with these assignments. When designing technology for the classroom, many program designers forget that every student is different in the ways in which they think and learn. Therefore, while some students are zipping through their math assignments on their tablets, others may be struggling. A program called DreamBox, aims at eliminating this sort of one-size-fits-all math education while offering a more individualized instruction for students.

For many teachers, one big problem in math class is keeping students who are advanced in math challenged, while setting a pace in which slower students can still keep up. DreamBox is an online learning program where students can log on and complete a set of interactive math assignments at their own pace, whether that be fast or slow. With this program, teachers can keep an eye on each student individually by tracking the amount of questions answered correctly and monitoring the amount of time each student spends on each question. The program also utilizes adaptive learning, which challenges students at whatever level they are at. The feedback that DreamBox gives teachers goes a long way in diagnosing students’ problem areas. Teachers can then give more private and individualized instruction for students who may be struggling. DreamBox helps teachers solve one of the biggest problems when teaching math, while challenging students at all levels.

DreamBox is also designed to be used by students anywhere. For schools that subscribe to DreamBox’s service, students and teachers have 24 hour access to over 1,000 lessons. This allows teachers to the ability to assign DreamBox assignments in class, directly after material is taught, or as homework to reinforce what was taught in class. All students need to do their homework is their family computer or tablet with an internet connection. Beyond this, DreamBox is also affordable at $25 per student per year, or $7,000 for an unlimited amount of students per year. Since DreamBox offers lessons based on the curricula of each grade in elementary school, an elementary school with a large number of students can get a lot of bang for their buck. This especially holds true because the program does not require outside textbooks for students.

Overall, DreamBox is quickly revolutionizing the way elementary math education is being taught. By providing a highly individualized and challenging math instruction, teachers can keep an eye on each of their students. This further allows teachers to give special instruction to those who are struggling, while keeping the more advanced students stimulated. This also allows teachers to recognize trends among the class so they can review topics that many in the class are struggling with. In all, DreamBox does a fantastic job at utilizing technology to bring a highly individualized elementary math education to students at low costs.

Source: http://www.dreambox.com/

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