Implementations

Observations from Khan Academy coaches and classrooms

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The Magic Ingredient in Milpitas’ Blend: Teacher-Driven Design

EdSurge’s Matt Bowman visited Alison Elizondo’s classroom using Khan Academy and reflected on the impact of allowing teachers to design how they use tech in their classrooms. 

The Magic Ingredient in Milpitas’ Blend: Teacher-Driven Design

If Room 303 is any indication, letting great teachers call the hardware shots might be an amazingly good idea

by EdSurge co-founder Matt Bowman

“Whoa.”  Several visitors simultaneously whispered the same assessment upon entering Burnett Elementary’s Room 303 in Milpitas, CA.

The teacher, Ms. Alison Elizondo, greeted our tour group. Behind her, 33 4th graders were sprawled in groups across the room. Two huddled around a Chromebook listening to a third explain some point of a paused Khan Academy video. Another pair used an iPad to record their own math lesson. Half a dozen typed away independently, writing, as we soon learned, narratives of how to solve sample word problems they themselves had developed. A large bulletin board displayed each student’s personal math objectives for the year.  Elizondo herself was coaching one single student when we entered, with her back to the class. She prefers sitting that way to show trust.

As we milled about the room, visitors began exchanging furtive glances like prospectors discovering the Mother Lode.  A purposeful buzz permeated the tech-heavy class as 8- and 9-years olds taught each other the finer points of arithmetic.

Burnett Elementary is a Title I public school with 50% immigrant population in the Milpitas school district, whose bottom-up approach to going blended we profiled earlier this week. That approach, which gives teachers a big say in what tech to use and how, seems to be yielding positive results in Room 303. Eighty percent of Elizondo’s students were proficient by the end of last year, and the 4th grade as a whole had the highest math proficiency rates in the school.

The district let Elizondo take the lead on creating her blended rotational model, even allowing her to dictate hardware requirements. She ended up with a rather fine-tuned setup: 18 Chromebooks and 2 iPads, with access to Khan Academy and EduCreations. Elizondo developed the model with a single goal in mind: free the teacher up for more one-on-one coaching time. Along the way, she’s training her students to teach themselves, focusing on skills like goal-setting, progress tracking and checking for mastery…

For the full article article, visit here.

For more on Alison’s classroom, check out her blog posts here.

Filed under edsurge alison elizondo burnett milpitas

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A little healthy competition: Alison’s 4th grade class recently celebrated their first 100,000 energy point earner. Today they celebrated the first student to master over 100 math skills (the Magellan sun badge).  On the KA site, sun badges are described as follows:

Sun badges are epic. Earning them is a true challenge, and they require impressive dedication.

Heather, here’s to you! Congrats on all your hard work - keep it up. 
Alison’s class is loving learning and challenging each other. If yours is too, send us your stories and pictures/videos at implementations at khanacademy dot org. 

A little healthy competition: Alison’s 4th grade class recently celebrated their first 100,000 energy point earner. Today they celebrated the first student to master over 100 math skills (the Magellan sun badge).  On the KA site, sun badges are described as follows:

Sun badges are epic. Earning them is a true challenge, and they require impressive dedication.

Heather, here’s to you! Congrats on all your hard work - keep it up.

Alison’s class is loving learning and challenging each other. If yours is too, send us your stories and pictures/videos at implementations at khanacademy dot org. 

Filed under burnett milpitas alison heather

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100,000 points!  This picture came along with a sweet note from Burnett Elementary’s 4th grade teacher Alison Elizondo who kicked off Khan Academy with her students a few weeks ago : 

Today we celebrated our first student who earned 100,000 energy points.  Matthew set this as his first custom goal.  All the kids were so proud, supportive and encouraging to him. 

Congrats, Matthew! We’re excited that Khan Academy is supporting an encouraging, positive classroom culture. 

100,000 points!  This picture came along with a sweet note from Burnett Elementary’s 4th grade teacher Alison Elizondo who kicked off Khan Academy with her students a few weeks ago

Today we celebrated our first student who earned 100,000 energy points.  Matthew set this as his first custom goal.  All the kids were so proud, supportive and encouraging to him. 

Congrats, Matthew! We’re excited that Khan Academy is supporting an encouraging, positive classroom culture. 

Filed under burnett alison elizondo 4th grade energy points khan academy matthew

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Ready. Set. Go!

Guest blog post by Alison Elizondo, 4th grade teacher at Burnett Elementary, a Title 1 school in Milpitas, CA.

Welcome to the 2013-2014 school year!  During the summer, I attended (and spoke) at the KA workshop offered free of charge in Redwood City, CA.  Maureen, from Khan Academy, encouraged participants to ‘just start’.  

 

This is my third year using the KA platform in my fourth grade classroom.  Because I want to constantly evolve, improve and create new learning experiences for myself and my students, I set a goal to begin KA on the first day of instruction.

 

I was amazed at what I witnessed in my classroom.  The students were able to sign up, personalize their account, add me as a coach, take the new pretest and begin earning energy points on the very first day….and in 40 minutes.


First hand, I have experienced what kids can achieve if given the opportunity.  I have 9 fourth graders that are still 8 years old.  They were able to accomplish all of these tasks effortlessly.  The message I took from this is that kids are open to new learning if the teacher is willing to try new ways of teaching.


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Last year my class created the name ‘We <3 2 Learn’ for our KA rotation model.  This school year, my fourth graders are going to innovate and collaborate in order to advance our program.  Each student created an attainable math goal for themselves.  We used the cool KA leaves found in the Coach Resources section of Khan Academy.  These are now displayed on our ‘We <3 2 Learn’ bulletin board.


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My students completed a survey today about the first week in fourth grade.  Most every student reflected that the best part of the week was beginning Khan Academy.  This is exciting! I can only imagine what we can achieve in 180 days together.  Stay tuned :)


Filed under alison elizondo milpitas burnett back to school math khan academy love learning

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We <3 2 Learn

Guest blog post by Alison Elizondo, 4th grade teacher at Burnett Elementary School in Milpitas, CA.  

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Khan Academy has changed the way I teach.  I cannot believe that it has only been one year since I signed up for my very own account!  With the support of my principal, administration and school district as a whole, I have seen my vision come into action.  Burnett Elementary, Go Bulldogs!, is a Title 1 school located in Milpitas, CA. We serve a diverse population in which 40% of our kids are english language learners and 36% are eligible for free/reduced lunch.   In our class of 33 4th graders and one 42 year old teacher, we are all lifelong learners and coaches. I want my students to be comfortable trying new things; to this end, it is my responsibility to model this risk taking in my teaching.

As educators we must prepare our students for college and career.   I believe our future innovators will need to collaborate with their peers, communicate effectively, think critically, and demonstrate creativity.  The way teachers can assist students with this endeavor is to explain the relevance of their studies to future use, expect students to achieve proficiency through rigorous studies and to work together to achieve a common goal. Khan Academy lends itself as a diverse tool for achieving my goal of preparing students for their exciting future.

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We <3 2 Learn, our blended learning rotational math block, was created with the simple goal of allowing me 80 minutes of coaching time to assist my students with strategic, targeted intervention that clears up misconceptions quickly…This is Khan Academy!   My students are genuinely gaining true mastery of mathematical concepts because they are demonstrating continuous proficiency in the Khan Academy modules.  I am able to differentiate my teaching effortlessly by using the real time data.

Because Khan Academy is a tool not a program, I wanted to create a blended learning environment where kids learn in many different modalities.  The other centers include Common Core projects, Board Math templates that include doing research and also “producing” Educreations videos, similar to Sal’s. Since I “invented” We <3 2 Learn in February, already it has evolved. We now include goal setting, reflections, taking notes, and practicing active listening. Learning can and should happen in a joyful environment; in my class we love to learn!

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Update: Less than 2 weeks after Alison wrote this post, she was chosen as Teacher of the Year at her school.  What made it even more special is that she was chosen by her colleagues for the award.  Congrats Alison!  

Filed under burnett alison elizondo khan academy teachers school blended learning