your level of
praise and encouragement through smarthelp motivates students to work harder.
When students struggle, smarthelp teaches
It has been very interesting to observe how SmartHelp’s
new motivation system has engaged my students and
made them want to learn and work through math modules.
in real-time from Apangea Learning’s live, online certified teachers
who would communicate with them
through interactive voice, chat, and
electronic whiteboard technology.
Additionally, this system provides
a number of administrative tools that
keep me informed of which students
need help and with which skills. Most
importantly, it always addresses the specific learning needs for each student.
During my 14 years of teaching, I
have found that many students aren’t
engaged because they can’t conceptually
work through a problem. They struggle
to read a problem and decipher what is
important and how to apply it. SmartHelp teaches my students problem solving skills. SmartHelp gives them a new
way to look at solving math by teaching
them a five-step problem-solving process that helps them break down any
problem into manageable steps. Each
time students work through a problem,
this process is reinforced and it chips
away at the walls they have built. It
stresses a skill set that can be used to
address many different types of prob-
lems encountered inside and outside
of the classroom.
When students complete a math lesson or even a module, it reinforces that
they can do it, and it builds self-pride
and confidence. One of my students
last year taught himself advanced math
concepts through SmartHelp. He was
successfully working through problems on material he had never done or
seen in a classroom or textbook.
Similarly, many of my students
have never been rewarded or even
praised for doing well in school. It has
been very interesting to observe how
SmartHelp’s new motivation system
has engaged my students and made
them want to learn and work through
math modules. Because of the rewards
provided, they actually see tangible
results that correlate to their effort.
Perhaps a student said it best: “Math
is a lot cooler if you can learn it on a
computer.” I think that I would have
—Scott Hu myer is coordinator of Computer
Assisted Instruction at Holy Family Learning
in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
online assessment tool.