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Using Virtual Tools in an Elementary Math Intervention Program

February 20, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 143

When kids struggle with math, they wind up struggling with many other subjects throughout their years in school. That's why it's important to catch any problems students might be having and implement an elementary math intervention program early on. Through careful progress monitoring and the use of interactive, adaptive online games and virtual learning environments, teachers can ensure that kids get all the help they need to succeed academically.

Success Through Early Intervention

The response to intervention program used in most schools today is a three-tiered approach to early intervention. Tier 1 involves what can be done to help kids as part of general classroom instruction. Tier 2 may involve small group instruction within the classroom or outside of the classroom as part of a remediation program. Tier 3 addresses those students whose struggles require more individualized instruction. It's essential for teachers to respond to the needs of students in each tier in a way that provides the best possible type of instruction. Each student must be actively engaged in his or her education in order to become proficient in crucial skills.

Online Games Spark Interest

Some kids struggle with math simply because they're not interested in it. In these cases, it can be especially difficult to convey the importance of mastering basic math skills. There are many methods that teachers can use to attempt to spark an interest in math concepts, but when an elementary math intervention program becomes necessary, students need to be engaged quickly in order to come back on par with their peers. This is where a virtual learning environment can come in handy. Students who have exhibited disinterest in a traditional classroom setting may be engaged by playing online math games. Apparent disinterest may also stem from a lack of understanding. But by being able to work at their own pace in an encouraging online "world," kids begin to view math as fun, thereby leading them towards a greater understanding of essential concepts. 

Progressive Assessment Through Adaptive Learning

An elementary math intervention program can only succeed if teachers are familiar with their students' strengths and weaknesses. Comprehensive progress monitoring before and during academic intervention gives a clear picture of what struggling students need help with, where they're making progress and what skills are going to require more practice. Online math games are highly adaptive to the specific needs of each student who plays them, a characteristic which is especially helpful when it comes to assessing student performance. Not only can teachers monitor how far students are progressing through a virtual environment, they can also take the feedback from each game and use it to better adapt the traditional curriculum to meet the needs of their classes.

The concepts presented in elementary-level math are essential to academic success throughout the higher grades. When an elementary math intervention program is properly implemented, students who have difficulty with math early on can get the help that they need to come to a better understanding of math. Integrating virtual learning tools that include online games into the standard classroom environment gives these kids a fun, engaging way to address their struggles and move toward proficiency in all essential math skills.

Jim Wheelin writes about many different educational topics for parents, kids and teachers. He has helped many struggling students to find the best elementary math intervention program to meet their needs. Jim also encourages other to test educational games such as the ones offered at

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