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Current time:0:00Total duration:4:14

Video transcript

- They're quirky. They don't always smell great. But I really love teaching middle school. (upbeat, playful music) They're pretty amazing, and it's a really pivotal age in terms of instruction and learning. And if you're able to make an impression at that age it can really set students down a path to be really successful and have a lot of opportunity and options. (upbeat music) I really enjoy teaching math because I feel like too many times students have a really terrible experience with math. And so I'm really passionate about filling in those gaps for kids and creating a meaningful math experience for them that allows them to sorta re-embrace math and a love for mathematics. When I started the beginning of this year, students were tremendously below grade level. These are sixth graders that enter the school anywhere between a second grade level to, I think the higher range being, at a beginning fourth grade level. So on average, about two years, two and a half years behind. I was at the charter school conference in San Diego last year, and Sal Khan spoke at the conference about Khan Academy. It created a little bit of a spark, and I started, probably it was a little disruptive, but was talking to the people sitting next to me being like oh, I wanna do this in my classroom. I don't know how we're gonna do it. I'm gonna go rogue if I have to and find the computers and make this happen. And so after hearing Sal speak at the conference, I went back and just went with it and started putting my students that were struggling on Khan. They were really into it. I think, given the demographic that we teach just age-wise and the generation we teach, technology is so heavy in their lives. Everywhere they are, it's technology. They were real excited to be using Khan Academy. They were like, "Yeah! I got this! I can do division now. I couldn't do division before." Using the data, I can break students into groups. I can target students who are specifically struggling in certain areas. I can also see students as a whole. Like if, for instance, the class completes a module on least common multiple. And they've all mastered it before I introduce it in the class then I know, hey, this isn't something I need to spend as much time on. So as a teacher, it's freed up learning time for me to use time more efficiently as well. And that's really helpful for me as a teacher in my classroom. To really push kids. Helping them make progress towards the next grade level, but also helping them make progress just as mathematicians in general. When I started the beginning of this year, some of them liked math. A lot of 'em didn't like math. And Khan has just, has been an incredibly valuable tool in terms of just buying them in. I have one student specifically who stands out when I think of them. He's like I used to hate math and now, now I really love it. They're not only accessing sixth grade curriculum, but they're also succeeding in the sixth grade math curriculum. Some of the students have made two years growth mathematically. (fast-paced jazz music) Khan Academy allows them to go back if they didn't get it. But if they got it, to engage in a different type of mathematics. It's just really awesome. To see them there on Khan Academy, doing their thing, searching for videos, tying it back to what we're learning in class and being motivated to take charge of their own learning. (fast-paced jazz music)