Assignment Focus to Achieve Individualized Student Growth in Dreambox
Type of technology: Dreambox Application
SAMR Model Rating: Modification
Grade level: K-6
Subject area: Math
Cost: $ per site
Within our district, we all have access to Dreambox K-6. This has proved to be a great tool to use within math rotations, for homework, or extra review for students. Recently, Dreambox has updated their resources on their website and I decided to explore their new features.
I listened and watched the webinar that was available on their website on February 1, 2017. You can find this on your dashboard if interested.
I decided to focus on the area that helps improve my student focus when using Dreambox during class time. One of the biggest struggles I have had was figuring exactly how to monitor each individual student and where they were actually struggling. One of the updates allows you to closely monitor the areas your students are having a hard time with, and to focus them on a particular standard/cluster.
Here is a little breakdown as to how to use this new tool to help improve student growth:
Where do I start?
You first log into your teacher account and click on your classroom. Up pops a list of all of your students and the progress they are making. One important part is to make sure you are selecting the time frame you want. You can do: Today, Last 7 days, Last 30 days, Custom Days, School Year, or Summer School. This can be very helpful for when it comes to report card time and you want to see the progress they have made over a specific trimester.
What is Assign Focus?
At the top dark blue bar, you will see a relatively new section that has been added called Assign Focus. This is a new tool where you can assign two types of assignments to a specific student or your entire class. These types of assignments are Long-Term and Short-Term.
What is a Short-Term Assignment?
A Short-Term assignment is an assignment that is about 1-2 lessons, and lasts for 2 weeks, or when the student has reached proficiency in this area. The purpose is to introduce a topic, reinforce, or for additional review. When you assign this (I will show you below how to do), the student will receive an icon that is a star, indicating that is an assignment you have assigned for them.
What is a Long-Term Assignment?
A Long-Term assignment is an assignment that lasts a bit longer, anywhere from 2-10 weeks. This is more deeply targeted into a particular area for students to work on. They will have multiple lessons to work on to reach proficiency. When you assign this, the student will receive an icon that is a calendar, indicating that is is an assignment you have assigned.
How do I Assign Focus for particular student?
First, it is suggested that you click on a student and student their progress thus far. The green areas are the areas that are proficient, and the areas that include arrows are their growth they have achieved. The light blue areas are the areas the student is working towards. Below is a screen shot of a students dashboard.
This is in the OVERVIEW tab. I realize, this is a student that is behind in grade level, but is progressing. I have decided to focus this student on Numbers & Base Ten. So I click on Assign Focus tab. Here I have two options: Do I want a Long-Term Assignment or Short-Term? Since this student is not proficient in this area, I have decided to assign a Long-Term Assignment.
To do this, I click on Add assignment and select Long-Term. Then, I decide how many weeks, and what Standard or Cluster. Below you can see I have selected all standards in domain.
(you can see this student has started just a small percentage of this cluster, so this student will have In-Progress Lessons to start)
How do I monitor growth?
When I check in on this student, I click on Assign Focus and (as seen below) click on the view progress. Then, a nice graph pops up.
What does the Progress Report Mean?
They did a great job at explaining this in the Webinar. As I understood it, there are three things to look at:
Baseline: where the student started
Aim Line: where the student has to follow to reach proficiency
Trend Line: how quickly the student is progressing to reach
Goal, have the Trend Line close to the Aim Line in order to reach proficiency.*
This really helps gear your lessons you can have with this student.
Can you Assign Focus to your entire class?
Yes you can. However, what I took away from the Webinar was the importance of looking at the individual student and his/her needs. It makes for more growth for the student at his/her needs in specific areas.
How we all love to see growth and anything that can help us guide our struggling learners to Proficiency is so important. Hope this was helpful.