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Erin Kominsky knew she needed some magic to keep her school open.

In 1996, Jack L. Weaver Elementary in Los Alamitos, Calif., was the only school in the award-winning, high-performing district that allowed non-residents to enroll. But that opportunity wasn’t enough to fill the classrooms. With only 112 students at the time, Kominsky—principal then and now—looked for a new selling point. 

Enter the MIND Research Institute.

Amelia Earhart Middle School in Riverside, CA was selected by the district to pilot HMH Fuse: Algebra I, a new comprehensive educational program designed for the iPad. As a school that has experience with forward-moving technology, the educators at Earhart devised a strategic plan to utilize HMH Fuse: Algebra with students randomly assigned to use the app in comparison with those using a textbook for an entire school year. The results of the implementation were impressive: students using the HMH Fuse app were more motivated, more attentive in class, and more engaged with Algebra content relative to students using textbooks. 

Matthew Peterson

Part of MINDING MATH, a special report from MIND Research Institute

By MATTHEW PETERSON
Co-founder, MIND Research

Part of MINDING MATH, a special report from MIND Research Institute

Part of MINDING MATH: A special report from MIND Research Institute

Most teachers wouldn’t appreciate giving up the spotlight to a penguin. But at Colorado Springs School District 11, teachers don’t seem to mind.

That’s because their students are hooked on ST Math, MIND Research Institute’s innovative program that teaches math with the help of a computer-animated penguin named JiJi.

“We’ve seen upward movement in our students,” said Dave Sawtelle, K-12 math facilitator for the district. The kids, he said, actually look forward to math class.

Big Ideas Math

www.bigideasmath.com

As states now begin their transition to the Common Core State Standards, seven organizations have united to provide advice on issues related to the implementations of the mathematics curriculum and assessments.

Solve for x. While many of us first encountered this enigmatic instruction in high school, the last 20 years have seen a strong push to get students to take algebra in eighth grade or even before. Today, concerns about the economy highlight a familiar worry: American eighth-graders trailed their peers in five Asian countries on the 2007 TIMSS mathematics assessment, and American fourth-graders were outperformed by students from eight other countries, including England, Latvia and Kazakhstan.

In a major address on educational policy last March, President Barack Obama underscored his priorities for the pending reauthorization of the federal No Child Left Behind Act. "We will end what has become a race to the bottom in our schools, and instead spur a race to the top by encouraging better standards and assessments," he promised. "This is an area where we're being outpaced by other nations. They are preparing their students not only for high school or college, but for a career. We are not."

81 percent of administrators said their districts were adequately teaching students about Internet safety, but just 51 percent of teachers said so. SOURCE: National Cyber Security Alliance and Microsoft

 

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