Online Homework activities to improve assessment and student engagement
Our school has used a number of online resources over the past few years in order to make homework more streamlined, accessible and interesting for students. Some of these Apps include spellingCity, Mathletics and ReadingEggspress.
ReadingEggspress is a fantastic resource for tailoring learning activities, reading tasks, vocabulary quizzes and assignments to suit the Lexile level of different students. It features numerous, interactive and engaging games and features. Students can access a vast online Library of books. They can play stadium games wherein they compete with others around the world or country on a range of different topics. One key feature that I have begun to use recently is the ability to assign tasks for students.
Reading EggsPress Assignments:
During our laptop time in class, I will log in to the students results database of ReadingEggspress. Here I can see the Lexile level of my students, and their improvements and areas of concern.
Using this information I can then choose a particular book that I feel is of interest to the children (There are numerous fact/fiction books in the library so this can easily be linked to topics that your class are covering). I can choose books that are at the Lexile level of the students. I can make groups and assign many different reading tasks to differentiate between the different students needs and abilities.
The assignment can then be published with an end date. I normally allow the students one week to complete their assignment. As the week progresses I can log in and see the students progress and how they are doing.
Each student has there own log in details and can log in at home using their tablets, I-pads, computers or phones.
why is this beneficial:
- Student engagement to these assignments has been very high in my class.
- the assignment is easily differentiated for your students abilities.
- There is such a wide and varied array of books available on the platform and so it greatly reduces teacher preparation and research time.
- The Lexile level of each reader is clearly visible for the teachers.
- The students enjoy the novel experience of using their phones/ipads to complete their homework.
- The clear presentation of the students progress and results makes assessment easy for teachers to assess.
Mathletics is similar to the Reading EggsPress application in that it provides a wide variety of tailored activities that cover the numeracy curriculum. It has an excellent feature that allows teachers to assign activities, home work and problem solving questions. Much like Reading EggsPress, the interface is easy to use. Teachers can asign homework or activities under the teacher console section.
Within the Homework tab there are numerous options teachers can select from:
They can assign certain activities and set dates for completion.
Within each section or stand unit there are a number of different types of activities. The teacher has the abilitiy to pick and choose the exact topic that the students are being assigned.
Teachers also have the ability to assign homework sheets and other problems from here.
Like Reading EggsPress, These assignments are easily tracked. The Mathletics software compiles the results and presents them in a user friendly chart that makes assessment very simple for the teacher. This type of homework is far more engaging for the students and in many cases it results in students spending some extra time playing the online competitive games on the platform. The students enjoy the colourful interface and the teacher benefits by having tailored homework assignments and easy to use assessment tools. A win-win for all !