WHY DID YOU CHANGE HOW GROWTH IS MEASURED?
We have received feedback from many of our educators that showing growth in terms of a percentage has been confusing to understand and challenging to monitor student progress. By changing to Standards units, we are providing a more comprehensive and actionable summary of DreamBox's impact on your students' learning.
In particular, measuring growth in terms of Standards Met has a few advantages:
- It is based on a language and set of units that most teachers already know and are using in their classrooms.
- You can see not only how much the student grew but also where the growth occurred (e.g, they met the standard for counting objects up to 100).
To learn more about how the new Standards Met measurement unit works, please see our Standards Met and Progressed In Support Article.
WHAT “AT-A-GLANCE” DATAPOINT SHOULD I BE USING TO TRACK MY STUDENT’S PROGRESS?
For a quick view of a student’s progress in DreamBox over the current school year, pay attention to the Standards Met number at the top-right of the student’s page. This tracks the number of standards that they have completed since July 1st of the current school year.
HOW DO I KNOW WHICH STANDARDS THE STUDENT HAS MET?
With this new unit of measurement, you can now see not just how much the students have grown, but also which topics they have learned while in DreamBox. You can see this by hovering over either the Standards Met or Standards Progressed In values that are shown anywhere at the Student or Classroom level pages.
Hover over the Standards Met data point in the top bar of the Student’s reports to see what topics they have completed so far this year.
In this example, you can see that Clara has met two standards since August 8, 2016 and they are 3.OA.A.2 and 3.0A.B.6.
When viewing Proficiency data with the new Standards Met metric, you can now see exactly how much of the curriculum your students have learned:
In this classroom, you can see that Clara has met 2 of the 20 standards in Grade 3 and Clifford has met 19 of the 20 Grade 3 standards.
Note that if you forget the exact standard definitions for your state (what is 1.NBT.A.1 again?), they are available in the Insight Dashboard as well. From the Classroom Overview page, simply click on the Standards tab, then either mouse over any code to see its description or click on one of the table headings above the codes to launch a help window that has definitions for all standards.
WHAT GOAL SHOULD I SET FOR MY STUDENTS?
If you are setting goals with your students, we suggest doing so in one of the following terms:
- Lessons completed – This is the best way to set goals with your students. Lesson completion is something that they can control and diligence of lesson completion will lead to the most growth in learning. Here is our recommendation for lesson completion per week based on the student’s grade level
- Standards met – This is another way that you can specify a goal with your students. In order to progress the equivalent of about one grade level during the school year, we generally recommend a goal of 1-3 Standards Met each month.
If you want to get more specific with your goal-setting when it comes to Standards Met, you can view the number of standards that DreamBox provides for your grade by referring to the proficiency columns in the classroom overview:
For example, for Common Core State Standards, there are 14 standards supported by DreamBox in Grade 1. So if you want your students to progress a full grade level in a year and give them trimester goals, you can give your students a goal of 4-5 standards a trimester (14 divided by 3).
The number of topics that DreamBox covers at each grade level varies based on the local state standard that you are using. On average, there are about 10-20 topics available for each grade, though for some state standards, DreamBox curriculum covers 30+ topics.
Factors that affect the rate of growth are the grade levels of the students, the grade level of the standards, the complexity of the standards, the students' DreamBox usage time, the students' pace of learning, and the students' self-directed learning paths.
HOW DO I COMPARE PROGRESS OF MY STUDENTS?
The progress that each student makes while in DreamBox will vary based on several factors including the complexity of the standard, a student’s DreamBox usage time, student pace of learning, and self-directed learning paths.
If you used to use the Growth % value to determine which students in your classroom have made the most progress in a particular time period, you can now sort by the Standards Met column to see how many standards each student has completed (and which standards if you mouse over!) The Standards Progressed In column provides additional info if you also want to see how many standards the student has made progress in (but not fully met) during the selected time period.
Because standards completion may take some time, for comparison of student progress in a short time frame (e.g. weekly check-ins or a student contest), we recommend that you focus on lesson completion. To ensure the most growth, students and teachers should focus on completing the recommended number of lessons each week.
HOW CAN I TALK TO MY STUDENTS ABOUT STANDARDS WHEN THEY DON’T REALLY UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY ARE AND WHAT THEY MEAN?
Some students (especially those in younger grades) may not be using standards in their classrooms on a regular basis. A simple way to discuss progress with such students is to talk about how many “topics” they are going to learn in a year and how many of these topics they have already completed in DreamBox. The number of topics that DreamBox covers at each grade level varies based on the local state standard that you are using. On average, there are about 10-20 topics available for each grade, though for some state standards, DreamBox curriculum covers 30+ topics.
HOW CAN I IDENTIFY WHAT TOPICS TO ASSIGN MY STUDENTS IF I WANT TO ADDRESS AND REMEDIATE GAPS IN THEIR PRIOR KNOWLEDGE?
Dreambox's Intelligent Adaptive Learning engine is constantly adapting and determining how to fill in gaps in every individual student’s learning pathway. However, if they choose, educators can also identify the places in earlier grade levels where a student has not quite completed a grade level or a domain and assign this topic to them through AssignFocus™. If you want to target a particular gap in your student’s learning, you can navigate to the Standards tab in your Classroom view to see what standards your students have made progress in but have not yet completed. These are indicated by half-filled blue circle. When you hover over these circles, you can see exactly how far along that student is on the standard. By selecting the grade level at the top of the page, you can focus on identifying gaps from previous grade levels.
Once you identify a standard that a student needs assigned, you can click directly on the circle to be taken to the student's page. You can then click the Add Assignment button to create this assignment for the student. To make an assignment for several students in your class, go to the AssignFocus tab from your Classroom view, click the Add Assignment button, and select the topic that you want to assign and the students you would like it assigned to.