Lower School students participating in LearnStorm, a contest held by Khan Academy to energize math learning, are achieving goals that translate to charity for causes of their choice.
The LearnStorm platform allows teachers to personalize learning and assess students individually and as a class. Grade 5 math teacher Becky Esquenazi noticed how motivated students were to reach goals: “My students stepped up to the high expectations I set for them, and fully embraced the challenge,” she said. “In Grade 5 we solidify the foundation for middle school math and beyond. My class in particular has started working on early pre-algebra skills, and using Khan Academy ensures that they continue to review the more concrete number skills on which they will build their conceptual math understanding,” she added. The class earned school supplies for children in need.
STEM teacher Nancy Penchev used LearnStorm with Grade 3 for the study of measurements. Her students set a goal and earned special water-treating tablets for people with no access to clean water. “Because they so loved the aspect of helping others, we are going to continue that challenge. If they can finish all the assignments at 75% or better in 2 weeks, we will be able to donate to another charity of their choice,” Mrs. Penchev said.
As an adjunct to curriculum, programs like LearnStorm carry high motivational value and academic benefits. And they make the world a better place, one lesson at a time.