Woot Math in a 4th Grade Classroom

– Digital Manipulatives –

Not having to search for a half, third, and sixth piece (that accidentally got knocked on the ground and now is under someone’s shoes, or what color was the twelves piece?!) To model a problem quickly and efficiently for a learner still at the concrete level of fractions is a teacher’s dream come true!

Woot Math provides an opportunity for students to have access to manipulatives and models of all sizes and types (fraction bars and circles are available to students) while working on problems that cover all grade level standards. This is exactly what I have always wanted to be able to provide for my students. The question types are varied with kid friendly fonts, graphics, and animations to keep students interested peeked. Additionally, the writing tool is fantastic for showing how to make groups, separate, divide, and give meaning to word problems – every kids’ nemesis. Woot Math has built in positive reinforcements and rewards to keep students engaged while offering rigorous common core aligned curriculum. Students are presented with problems that mirror our state test and their confidence is built as they see themselves as experts to help classmates working on similar question types.

– Student engagement includes badges and stars –

Like most classrooms across the nation, my class is composed of students performing multiple grade levels above and multiple grade levels below in math a well as other subjects. Woot Math is a perfect match for every student in our class. Students with IEPs are able to watch the instructional videos and receive curriculum starting with third grade standards. Students who are advanced in math can progress on their own above our grade level and continue to learn fractions and decimals into sixth grade level.

We use Woot Math in class for 15 to 30 minutes a day while we are working in the fractions domain. I assign each student to start at the beginning of the program, which is third grade standards. As a fourth-grade teacher it is a dream for me to have no assumptions of what the students remember from last year. Every child is able to work through last year‘s fractions and decimals standards. (You can find a useful example of Woot Math problems  on their Equivalent Fractions page.)

Woot Math gives students the opportunity for additional practice if they make mistakes, so mastery is the focus of each assignment. I love that Woot Math ensures that each student is able to be successful before moving on. The focus is on mastery, not on getting the assignment completed as fast as possible. If students rush through with careless errors they are given more opportunities to try those problems again. Students learn that focus and accuracy are more important than speed. The immediate feedback students receive let’s them know right away if they are understanding the standards or not.

– Completed Book Award –

Each week on Monday I set a goal for students to complete one or two “books” by Friday. I love that the curriculum is broken down into small parts so students are celebrated frequently and receive recognition for their hard work. Everyone feels like a winner with Woot Math. Kids love receiving a new highlight color and being awarded their stars at the end of a section. I reinforce to my class not to guess and to rewatch the video that comes at the beginning of the section which models, describes, and outlines exactly how to complete the work.

The Mastery by Books report is a quick way for me to scan who has completed which books and to what degree of mastery. The color-coded grid is simple, straightforward, and a breeze to use for the busy teacher with multiple subjects to teach a day. Being able to see 32 students work on individualized assignments that have been personalized to meet their needs is so rewarding. Every student is learning the next thing they need to know. That’s the power of Woot Math! Woot!

– Sample Report –

Christi Tucker is a 4th grade teacher with her masters degree in curriculum and instruction. She has ten years of experience in preschool through 8th grade. Christi loves the Southern California sunshine, color-changing sheep on Minecraft, kayaking in the bay, and taking on a challenge to learn something new. Embracing change, she loves to integrate technology into learning and utilizing it to make learning an adventure everyday.

While there are no shortage of lists, they can be time consuming to parse and analyze. Organizations like Common Sense Media are critical (you can see their review of Woot Math here). Tracy Johnston Zager’s just posted her list, A Totally Not Exhaustive Look at the Current State of Elementary EdTech. We think her crtieria is a pretty good lens for analysis. It includes:
1. No time pressure. Some of the recommended apps have the option of timing or the option of disabling the timer. I recommend disabling the timer in all cases. If you can’t disable or mellow out the timer, don’t use the app.
2. Conceptual modeling. There are plenty of apps that have flashcards embedded in sushi restaurants, caves, junkyards, etc. But I’m looking for programs that relate the concepts of the number and operations to the fact. This usually means some form of visual modeling (arrays, dots, etc.).
3. Productive handling of mistakes. They’re opportunities to learn and should be framed as such. Also, competition is to be avoided for most students.
As she mentions, the list is not comprehensive. But it definitely includes some of our favorites, as well as some that are new to us. Thanks Tracy for the thoughtful list! And we are proud that Woot Math was included. You can read her full review here: http://tjzager.com/2018/03/06/a-totally-not-exhaustive-look-at-the-current-state-of-elementary-edtech/

Woot Math in a 6th Grade Classroom

There are many ways I use Woot Math Adaptive Practice with my students. The Adaptive Practice provides a series of books by topic, covering all fraction standards. In sixth grade, we do an entire fraction unit, which I usually start by having them complete the Woot Math Fraction Refresher II unit. This book summarizes all the fifth grade standards, giving me the opportunity to quickly see my students strengths and weaknesses by reviewing the Woot Math Mastery by Topic report. From this report, I am able to immediately get easy to read insights into each student.

The Woot Math Fraction Refresher unit acts as my pre-assessment. I then use the Interactive Problem Bank, provided with Adaptive Practice, to create lessons that cater to the topics that the report identifies my students struggle with the most. The Woot Math Interactive Problem Bank works well with SMARTboards, or can be projected on a whiteboard where students can write directly on the pictures, figures, and diagrams. These lessons meet the needs of visual learners with a variety of models including bars, circles, number lines and more. The lessons meet the needs of auditory learners as we all talk through a problem or process. Additionally, the lessons are hands on, and let students draw on and move shapes around to justify their reasoning. Here is a great example of how to use Adaptive Practice with the Interactive Problem Bank and Woot Math Polls.
After my initial assessment, I then assign specific Adaptive Practice units to students based on their needs, including more advanced students who require a challenge. The smart software provides help and problems based on the way students answer, giving them appropriate practice. While students are working on Adaptive Practice in class, I have the time to meet one-on-one with students or in small groups to have in depth conversations about their understanding. I trust students to work on their device because they know I can see everything from my dashboard: screenshots of their work, how many problems they complete, and how much time it took them to complete each one. What I value most about Woot Math is that it perfectly supplements my curriculum and my teaching. The results speak for themselves: When my students use Woot Math they are more confident about math, and they are able to gain real mastery of the topics that they struggle with the most.

Janelle Stanton is a full-time math teacher at Broomfield Heights Middle School. She has been a middle school math teacher for ten years. Before becoming a math teacher, she worked in corporate finance. She says that the experience she has had outside of education has supported learning in her classrooms because she can often answer the question, “When will we ever need to know this?” Teaching is her dream job, and she especially loves middle school because “the students are growing and changing in every way, and trying to figure out how to be their best selves.” She believes that middle school mathematics provides the foundation for many necessary real world skills, and is the parent of two middle schoolers. She loves to learn new things and considers herself a lifelong learner. She has presented at local and national math education conferences, e.g., the MidSchool Math National Conference: https://msm2017.sched.com/janelle.stanton. Janelle has a BA in Business Administration with an emphasis on Accounting and Finance, an MBA, and a Masters in Secondary Education with emphasis on Mathematics.

Why Fractions Matter and How Woot Math Can Help

We know many students struggle to master fractions, and yet until recently, we didn’t know the full extent of the cost. From recent research, it is clear that facility with fractions is critical to higher mathematics and other advanced STEM fields.
As Dr. Robert Siegler and his colleagues found:
“A child’s knowledge of fractions in fifth grade predicts performance in high-school math classes, even after controlling for IQ, reading achievement, working memory, family income and education, and knowledge of whole numbers.”
Fractions: The new frontier for theories of numerical development.
— 2012, Siegler, R. S., Fazio, L. K., Bailey, D. H., & Zhou, X
With a slew of similar findings, it is clear that knowledge of fractions matter. The National Math Panel said it clearly in 2008: “…knowledge of fractions is the most important foundational skill not developed among American students.” Lack of this foundational skill remains equally evident in recent national testing. And yet, imagine the difference it would make if you could ensure that all students had the fluency with rational numbers we know they need to succeed. Woot Math supports you in making this difference. Teachers that use Woot Math report that it consistently increases both confidence and mastery of rational numbers. In only a few hours of use, teachers see measurable improvements in student performance. Here are a few specific ways that Woot Math’s personalized learning platform can help you ensure your students have the foundation they need to succeed.

We Support You In Your Instruction

Woot Math Adaptive Practice is designed to support a range of implementations. You can assign topics as part of an in-class rotation, for 1-on-1 instruction, or for further practice. The learning platform interleaves short-form instructional videos with engaging interactive problems. An easy to use teacher dashboard is provided so that you can monitor each student‘s progress, report on outcomes, and assign new topics. Woot Math typically recommends two to four sessions per week, 20 to 30 minutes per session (learn more about our implementation guidelines for elementary school and middle school students).

Content Is a Key Differentiator

Woot Math leverages learning sciences’ leading research on teaching rational numbers. “Adaptive technology can only be effective if it leverages quality supplemental content,” says Krista Marks, Woot Math CEO in Fractions Unlocked: Why Fractions Matter and how technology can help. Our fraction content is informed by decades of research in fraction education from organizations like the Rational Number Project. With funding from the National Science Foundation, we have demonstrated efficacy and effectiveness using Woot Math.

Digital Manipulatives Build Fluency

The ability to work with digital models has proven effective in developing conceptual understanding of fractions. Students need to experience making connections among different representations in order for them to make sense of fractions. In Woot Math, students are exposed to a wide variety of models, including fraction circles, fraction bars, number lines, set models and more. As students gain experience and exposure to a variety of models, they develop the strong mental images that they will need to succeed in math. Beth Wycoff, using Woot Math with all her 5-7th grade students, found:
“Woot Math has given me a practical and efficient way to take students individually from concrete to abstract understanding of fraction concepts. Students are able to construct fractions and visualize the problems they are solving.”

The promise of adaptive technology is the ability for software to tailor content to each individual student’s needs. But not all adaptive platforms (also known as personalized learning environments) adapt in the same way. In fact, there are huge variations in the adaptivity and recommendations that these systems can make. The Woot Math platform analyzes student work – not just a right or wrong answer – but their actual interactions with the models, manipulatives, and scratchpad. Because the adaptive platform understands the student’s interaction with each problem, it can make much more targeted decisions about what the student knows, what the student doesn’t know, and what gaps to help remediate. From our NSF-funded research, we know that our adaptive platform has shown dramatic improvements in student learning. Get your students started today!

Dr. Terry Wyberg of the Rational Number Project provides tangible advice and practical tips for helping your students develop number sense in his article, Adding Fractions: Unlocking Confidence & Flexibility.

Would you like to unlock more free content in Adaptive Learning?

While we carefully crafted the free tier of Adaptive Learning to give you a substantial (and flexible) amount of content, we understand that you might want more. Maybe a lot more! We want more teachers to try Woot Math and see, first-hand, the positive effects for their students. We have launched a referral program that will help us get the word out to more teachers and help you unlock more free content at the same time! We think it is a win-win for you and for us.

Here is how it works

1. You identify teachers or schools that don’t currently use Woot Math, but might like to try it with their students.
2. You email your colleagues to introduce them to Woot Math and encourage them to sign up for the free tier. (There is a draft email below to use; just be sure to include your teacher code.) This will enable them to use it free with as many students as they like.
3. For each new teacher that signs up and sends us your teacher code, we will unlock one free book of your choice for you, and they will receive one additional free book as well. Check out the scope and sequence of our content to see which topics you might want to unlock next.

Thank you for using Woot Math so effectively this year. We appreciate the trust you place in us and we are grateful that we get to work with you. If you have questions or suggestions about this program, we would love to hear from you.

Sample Email

Hi,

Woot Math is a program that I’ve been using for awhile to help my students with fractions, decimals and ratios. It adapts to meet each student’s needs, and lets students work at their own pace. My students love it, and I’m impressed with their increased understanding. I also like that it is easy to access my students’ data and view their progress.

Woot Math has a free tier for teachers, but together we can unlock even more FREE content. If you’re interested in giving Woot Math a try, simply forward this email to: referral@wootmath.com

and include my teacher code:

If you have any questions about Woot Math, let me know or give them a call at 1-855-WOOT-MATH. If you decide to give it a try, I think you’ll be impressed with the results.

Best,

Is Adaptive Practice Free Tier Forever Free?

There is nothing worse than falling in love with a product during a free trial, and then not being able to afford it once the trial is over. Or being lured in by an offer for a free version of a product, only to find that it is so bare-bones so as to be almost useless. Woot Math’s Free Tier for Teachers is designed to provide enough content for hours of in-classroom use so that you can meaningfully try Adaptive Practice with your students without the constraints of a free trial period. We realize that you have limited time and resources, and our free tier is yours to use this year, next year and beyond. (Our other product, WootPolls, is always 100% free to teachers and students.)
We have carefully crafted the free tier to give you a substantial (and flexible) amount of content. In addition to providing access to core, foundation topics supporting mastery of fractions, you can choose two additional topics that directly meet your instructional goals. Your Woot Math Free Tier includes student progress reports and unlimited access to the problem bank for in-class instruction. Check out the scope and sequence of our content and how Woot Math can fit into your classroom.
Woot Math deeply engages students and uses proven, adaptive technology to meet each student’s personal needs. From fractions, decimals, and ratios through negative numbers and absolute value, our adaptive technology helps all of your students build conceptual understanding. The adaptive engine is able to go beyond right or wrong and assess each student’s actual work. This enables Woot Math to more accurately identify where a student is struggling and provide personalized instruction. Woot Math is transforming what it means for a student to be able to model a concept. While using models is not new, Woot Math goes further and delivers a suite of digital manipulatives that enable students to tactically experience concepts. Rather than static images, Woot Math has dynamic models that make students the builders, the makers. Students are able to interact and connect multiple representations, a critical bridge to fluency with rational numbers.