Introducing Teachley: Fact Flyer!

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Our fourth operations app, Fact Flyer starts with Linka and Pike’s take off from Mt. Multiplis. Kids help Linka continue her journey back to El Sumado, tracking her progress along the navigation map. Designed with a greater focus on building fluency, Fact Flyer allows 3rd – 5th graders the chance to practice both multiplication and division facts in a fun, flying game.

As with Teachley’s other apps, powerful, research-based strategies are provided to scaffold learning and support conceptual understanding of each fact, as needed. For example, to solve 8 x 4, students are reminded of the Double It strategy learned in Mt. Multiplis. They are prompted to “Take 8. Double it. Double it again.” To build flexible thinking, students are able to see the inverse relationship of multiplication and division when solving division problems. For example, the hint for 20 ÷ 10 appears as 10 x _ = 20.

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Fact Flyer automatically adapts to support the needs of each child, with problem difficulty progression based on proficiency and more time allotted to solve problems, as needed. Teachers can log into their Teachley account in the parent/teacher section of the app to personalize the gameplay for their students, allowing kids to continue playing where they left of any classroom iPad. Don’t have an account? No problem! Create your free account at www.teachley.com.

Students review their fact fluency at the end of each round. Teachers with premium Teachley subscriptions will be able to track their students’ progress in their dashboard. To sign up for a free trial of Teachley’s premium data reporting, click here. Fact Flyer is aligned with several Common Core State Standards and is designed to support Response to Intervention programs. This app is a great addition to your classroom’s operations fluency toolbox.

 

Fact Flyer is available for iPad on the App Store for $2.99 in the U.S. and is priced accordingly worldwide. Click here to download. Download before our ISTE 2016 promotion ends on June 30th for FREE!

 

*This app was made possible by the Federal Department of Education, with funding provided by an Institute of Education Sciences’ Small Business Innovation Research grant.

 

 

 

 

Teachley Connect: Connecting Apps and Formative Assessment

What’s the problem? We all know U.S. students spend far too much time taking standardized assessments (often between 10-20 tests) every year, not to mention the countless hours spent preparing for these tests. Research by the Council of the Great City Schools in 2015 found that spending more time on standardized tests does not improve student performance and that schools often have to wait 2-4 months to get the data from those tests. Data that is often too little too late…

Enough testing already!

Assessments can offer essential information for teachers about what students understand and where they’re struggling. But, they need the right kind of data, and it shouldn’t come from endless hours of testing. For instance, assigning student performance to a percentile doesn’t help anyone. What does a 75% or 1,267 points earned tell you about what a child understands or how you should be help that student? Instead, data must provide teachers information about where, specifically, students are excelling and struggling. For example, a first grade teacher can know that 5 students are all struggling with adding near doubles facts (e.g., 3 + 4 and 7 + 6) or a third grade teacher may see that half of her class consistently adds instead of multiplies when given Yx1 problems. Teachers can then use this formative data to intervene and re-address those concepts. Conversely, it also allows teachers to know when students are excelling and are ready for harder content.

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To truly impact teaching and learning, teachers need better sources of formative assessment data that they easily interpret and use when planning each day’s lessons.

So what is Teachley doing to help?

At Teachley, we believe learning should be fun! Imagine if instead of taking dreaded tests, kids are playing games. And these games adapt in real-time based on student performance and report meaningful data back to teachers. If you’ve been using Teachley in your classroom, you may already know how this can work. But, what you may not know is that we’ve recently received a new $900K Small Business Innovation Research grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences to expand our platform to include third-party math apps (see official announcement here). This grant will greatly bolster our efforts to bring rich formative assessment data across a variety of math content areas to teachers. So, students can spend more time playing games and less time worrying about filling in the correct bubble with a number 2 pencil. And teachers have the necessary information they need to easily differentiate instruction to meet the needs of all their students.

How will it work?

This summer, we will be working hard to prepare Teachley Connect for our first app partners. We’ll also develop new free EDU versions of our Teachley apps to work with the new system. During the course of the 2016-17 school year, we will expand our data reporting and intervention support to include students’ gameplay from our partners as well as several exciting new features. This new grant will allow Teachley to provide schools with a greater selection of apps that cover a wide array of K-5 math content. Stay tuned as we announce our first partners and beta launch later this summer.

 

Create your free Teachley account on our website, www.teachley.com to stay up-to-date on our latest progress. Have questions or want to be one of our first beta testers? Email us at info@teachley.com and we’ll get back to you right away.

Happy Summer!

Is four times always the same as two times doubled?

One of the trickiest part of teaching multiplication deals with the distributive property. Because of this, we made the distributive property the focus of Mt. Multiplis, our multiplication app.

The Common Core State Standards expect third graders to use the distributive property when multiplying (which you and I learned in middle school): “Knowing that 8 × 5 = 40 and 8 × 2 = 16, one can find 8 × 7 as 8 × (5 + 2) = (8 × 5) + (8 × 2) = 40 + 16 = 56” (CCSM.3.OA.B.5). That’s one complicated equation, and it’s hard to imagine that most 9-year-olds, who are just learning how to multiply, are able to make sense of that notation. So, we set out to see if we could not only make this complex content more approachable, but also fun.

At its core, the distributive property is about groups. It connects multiplication and addition by letting you break up a multiplication problem into smaller chunks. For example, when solving 7 x 8, you can think of it as 7 groups of 8. But, how does that help you multiply? Let’s say you forgot what 7 x 8 is, but you know 5 x 8 is 40. You can then think of 7 x 8 as 5 groups of 8 plus 2 more groups of 8, that’s 40 + 16.

In Mt. Multiplis students explore this property by using groups of wooden planks to build bridges. To fill a 7 by 8 area, students drag over 5 planks of 8 and then drag over another 2 planks of 8.


The best part of playtesting has been watching kids discover the applications of the distributive property on their own. While playing Level 5, which features a lot of 11 x __ problems, one fourth grader literally said, “Aha!” as he realized for the first time, why the 11s rule works. He explained to me that the 11s facts are easy (i.e. 5 x 11 = 55, etc), but that he didn’t know why the shortcut works, until playing Mt. Multiplis. Solving 11 x 7, he dragged over 10 groups of 7 to make 70 and then dragged over 1 more 7.

Another third grader was working through several 4 x __ problems. She would consistently drag out 2 planks and then use the Double-It card to make another set of 2 planks. She first saw the problem 4 x 6, dragging out 2 six-planks to make 12 then used the Double-It card to make another group of 12. She did not fully trust that the answer was actually going to be 24, but she entered it in anyway and was surprised when it was correct. Next, she solved 4 x 3 and then 4 x 8 in the same way. After solving 4 x 8, thinking about 16 doubled, she asked me, “Does that always work…with the 4 times problems…you can just double the 2 times?” Yep, it always works. And that’s some pretty sophisticated algebraic thinking. Another way to phrase her question: Does 4y = 2y + 2y? Yes, because of the distributive property.

To download Mt. Multiplis, go to: bit.ly/TeachleyApps

For a free extension activity to use with your students, click here.

 

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Teachley’s Photo Contest- Win an iPad

Congratulations to @ParoneK for winning our iPad mini filled with math apps! We loved your picture of how you use Teachley in the classroom!

Congratulations to our Finalists: @Chestnutbestnut @scottalan27 @cb6022 @MrsMarkersK

iPad Contest

How to win?

Tweet a photo of an extension activity (i.e. lesson plan, teacher-created game, whiteboard lesson, center activity, etc.) you have used to extend learning from any of Teachley’s apps. Share the photo by tagging @teachley and the hashtags #WeLoveTeachley #elemmath.  The person with the best activity will win an iPad mini filled with great math apps! Four finalists will each receive free promo codes for our apps. Tweet your photo by March 17th to be eligible to win. The winner will be announced on Twitter and the contest blog post on Thursday, March 24th.

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All participants must be over 18, have a valid school email address and a U.S. shipping address to be eligible to win. Visit our official rules to learn more.

Welcome BrainPOP teachers!

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Teachley is so excited to bring demo versions of Addimals and Subtractimals onto BrainPOP’s GameUp platform.


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Here are a few extension activities you can try with your students after they play Teachley Add and Subtract on GameUp.

K-2 Extra Practice

Rekenrek activity

To get the full versions of Teachley’s award-winning math apps, go to: bit.ly/TeachleyApps. We also offer in-depth data reporting and intervention support.  Contact info@teachley.com to learn more.

Teachley Winter Break Math Practice

Happy Holidays!

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To celebrate, we’re giving you Winter Break Math Practice packets to send home over vacation! To download, go to:

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Encourage students to practice their math facts over winter break!

We know that students often slip in their academic skills over vacations. So, we’ve created different math practice packets for Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grades to encourage students to practice their math facts and strategies.

 

Hope you have a wonderful, relaxing holiday vacation!

Love,

Your friends at Teachley

Avoiding the Speed Round

How to Avoid the Speed Round when Playing Addimal Adventure

While many kids love the task of beating the Professor Possum in the Speed Round (including an entire classroom of excited First Graders we visited yesterday at Brooklyn Arbor School), we wanted to share a tip for using Addimals with younger students (PreK, Kindergarteners) and with students who feel anxious during the timed Speed Round.

To skip the Speed Round:

Students should press the Home button during the “Blocks Won” screen (which appears right after the Tool Round ends) and then tap the Stop Sign. Students will be brought back to the Splash Screen where they can find their profile and begin playing a new Tool Round.

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Questions? Please feel free to reach out to us directly at info@teachley.com. We love hearing from you!

Introducing Teachley: Subtractimals!

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We are thrilled to announce the launch of Teachley: Subtractimals, our new math app for K-2nd grade students. Click here to download.

Subtractimals starts where Addimal Adventure leaves off. The sinister Professor Possum is at it again, this time trying to steal orbs of light from the home of our newest character, Slurp (Patooey’s cousin). Students solve subtraction problems to defeat the villain and are introduced to two effective subtraction strategies: count back and count on.

Slurp, our new cute green frog helps students count back when subtracting. There are two ways to use Slurp to subtract.

  • Count back 1-by-1: Tap on Slurp and he will eat 1 block at a time as you count back. For instance, to solve 6-2, you can tap on him one time and he will take away one block from your 6-block as you say “5”. Tap him again and he removes a second block as you say “4,” which is the answer. For added scaffolding, you’ll notice the count back serial notation appear with each action.
  • Count back multiple blocks (Part-Part-Whole strategy): For more advanced students, touch and hold Slurp to have him gobble up more than 1 block at a time. For 6-2, you can have him slurp up 2 blocks at the same time to see a visual of the 6-block divided into a 2-block and a 4-block.Slurp count back Lila

Patooey makes her return with the count on strategy, as she did in Addimals. This time, she uses count on to help kids connect addition and subtraction.

  • Count on 1-by-1: Tap on Patooey and she will spit out 1 block at a time to help you count on. For instance, for 10-8, you will see an outline of a 10 frame with 8 blocks filled in. After you press Patoeey once, she spits a block onto the 8-block, making 9. Press her 1 more time and she spits another block, which fills up the 10 frame. You count on as she spits, “8,9,10” and see that she has spit 2 blocks, the answer.
  • Count on multiple blocks: More advanced students may be able to figure out that Patoeey needs to spit 2 blocks out to complete the 10 frame. Touch and hold her until the number 2 appears and she will spit out 2 blocks at a time to complete the 10 frame.IMG_0041

Like in Addimals, the Speed Round encourages kids to answer quickly and gives scaffolded hints when needed.  Kids love the excitement and fun of the speed round.Speed round Subtractimals Lila

Subtractimals is optimized for schools with Common Core aligned content and personalizes learning for every child, even on shared iPad devices. Teachers can create or log in to their existing Teachley accounts to adapt the app for each student. Schools that subscribe to Teachley: Operations can get in-depth data reporting in real-time on all of Teachley’s math apps. To sign up for a free trial, click here.

Subtractimals is available for iPad on the App Store for $2.99 in the U.S. and priced accordingly worldwide. Click here to download.

Giveaway: Summer math practice packets

Screen Shot 2015-06-04 at 12.40.48 PMWe can’t believe it’s the end of the school year already! As a thank you to all of our teachers, we’ve created K-2 and 3-5 Summer Math Packets that your students can work on over the summer. They’re filled with challenging and thoughtful word problems for students to tackle.  Download the packets below and feel free to share with your colleagues!

 

Have a great summer break and stay tuned for the release of Subtractimals, coming out this summer.

K-2nd Summer Math Packet

3rd-5th Summer Math Packet

Teachley Awarded $300K in New Funding

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We are excited to officially announce that Teachley has been awarded two new federal grants totaling $300K to expand our product offerings for schools.

The first grant, from the Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, will enable third party apps to integrate with Teachley Analytics. What this means for schools? Teachers sign in to one app which syncs their class lists with a variety of fun and engaging new apps!

Our second award is from the National Science Foundation to develop a fractions product line for 3rd-5th grade students. We’ll be reaching out to schools for beta testers of our new app, which we’re sure students and teachers will love!