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Khan Academy in Los Altos School District

An overview of how KA is used in the Los Altos School District in Santa Clara County, California.

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  • female robot grace style avatar for user Cindy Griffin
    How have the schools found the funding for the laptops? I am hooked on the site. Our 5th graders all have accounts. We use our computer lab which is very difficult because of sharing the time with other classes. Additionally, long district assessments on the computer, sometimes last three weeks. Are schools using grants? I would love to know where to start finding funding.
    (7 votes)
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  • marcimus pink style avatar for user millicent
    Are the resources from the training on blended learning for teachers available somewhere?
    (4 votes)
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  • piceratops seedling style avatar for user Kelly Collier
    To my knowledge I am the first teacher in my county to implement Khan Academy into my classroom. I teach second grade and will be using the early math portion of the program. I am very nervous about making this year successful without the prior experience knowledge of the program. Is there somewhere we can go to ask questions and get advice on implementing the program throughout the year?
    (4 votes)
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    • spunky sam blue style avatar for user L
      I love the new early math section for my (few) kids and hope you will feel free to make suggestions at the previously mentioned https://khanacademy.zendesk.com/hc/en-us
      or check out other people's suggestions and vote them up so that they get more attention and possibly are implemented. Try this link, and the Coach button at the top of your Home Page (to customize your classes and data views), and good luck with the year! You can also report a problem within each exercise problem, if you find an incorrect one--the link is right under the "Check Answer" section--click it to fill out a short form, so that they will know there's a bug they need to fix on that specific problem. :-)
      (2 votes)
  • male robot hal style avatar for user Sanjiv
    One question to the great pioneers of Los Altos. What, in your view, is the highest tutor / pupil ratio that a math class using KA reasonably sustain. Thanks
    (1 vote)
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    • 1 : 1
      The model that Sal gives us, is that every student should work at their own pace, and do what they want/can. Sal gives them one-on-ones (through the videos), and if there are any doubts, then the teacher has a 1-to-1 session with the student to help him/her out.
      That is the ideal classroom according to the Khan Academy, and I agree to it.
      (3 votes)
  • purple pi purple style avatar for user Ms. McLoughlin
    Does your school, use standardized test? Have you seen growth in your students? Did the growth translate on standardized tests.
    (2 votes)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user Mamta Tiwari
    How can we apply this in junior classes?
    (1 vote)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user joeleahy1209
    Would a 1 for 1 plan work for this?
    (0 votes)
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Video transcript

(upbeat music) - [Teacher] Students are talking about math. They're talking about it in the hallways and on the playgrounds, and they're wanting to go home and log into Khan Academy It's really exciting. - The question that high performing districts, I think have to constantly respond to is, why change if things are going well. And it really came down to what our mission and vision were about. How can we make learning meaningful for each student at the individual level? And looking at Khan Academy or any other tool, it really comes down to what's the benefit for the students? What's the benefit for the teacher? In that order. Khan Academy got students, the instruction, the learning that they needed at the level they were at, at the time they needed it. The value for the teacher was the data elements that were available. Teachers could know at any moment in time, in real time where a student was soaring successfully and where a student was struggling. - The benefits allow teachers to rethink instructional time. We're actually finding we have more time. Teachers aren't spending time on skills that students already know. They're able to adjust their time accordingly to truly meet the students' needs. So we started with three teachers, 120 or so students, and now, in our second year, we have over a thousand students, using Khan Academy as an online tool, and about 50 teachers involved in the project. (dramatic music) - From the first time we started this, the kids were just through the roof about it. I mean, they just couldn't quit talking about it. They were excited. I could see that enthusiasm, I could see that they were just wanting to spend hours and hours of time doing math calculation. So right there, it's like a huge like woohoo-moment, because kids don't wanna sit down and do math calculations very often. We're able to move faster through the mandated curriculum. And so we've had more time actually to pull in projects, to pull in other kinds of activities that aren't just out of your math book. Which is fantastic, because that's where kids really learn and that's what they love. They get excited about actually working on something to see how it actually is applicable to their world. But we couldn't have gotten there without, I think having blended Khan Academy into our instruction. - Well, I always wanted to try to do other things. I always tried to pull in projects. I always tried to find ways of hitting all the students at all their levels. And I just never felt like I was doing a very good job at it. So when Khan Academy came, within the first two weeks, I could see the kids that were struggling, some kids were already passing module after module, moving into algebra, moving into places that I hadn't gotten to with them yet. I just looked at and said, oh my goodness, this is amazing. And I was able to pull in small groups of kids to help boost them up, find out where their levels were that were way below our fifth grade was at the time. And it finally gave me the freedom to know that I was teaching everybody and that nobody at any time was bored. - It helps in that I can pinpoint certain areas. Sometimes you can go for weeks and not know that a kid didn't get something from two chapters ago. So with Khan Academy, those things kinda show up a little bit more often and you can go in and sort of save the day. (laughs) - Khan Academy has really had a great impact on most of my students. There are those high achievers who use it to move ahead and they're curious about math, and they're wanting to move on and they're wanting to explore new things, and they have the ability to do that. Then we have the struggling learners, who are still struggling with basic math that they never mastered in third, fourth or fifth grade. And this gives them a chance to go back and fill those gaps in their understanding and move forward on a firmer foundation. These kids are actively engaged in their learning. These kids are applying their understanding of math to different situations. And they can have opportunities for one on one interactions with me, or small group interactions with me, where we can have math conversations that really contribute to their learning. - In the past, I had to spend a lot of time collecting papers, looking them over, carrying big backpacks, full of materials, to and from school and getting paper cuts. And now, I have all of that data on my computer and it's so convenient because I can be up 10 o'clock at night or five in the morning or three in the afternoon, in the midst of my class, and I have it all there. I've gotten emails from parents that said, we're having trouble on the homework, and I can go back and look at what that child was doing that night, find the exact problems they were having issues with, and plan my lesson for the next morning with that child. So my teaching is more informed and more targeted. And I don't have to carry that big backpack around. (laughs) (tense music) - The most exciting thing for me has been, just the idea of the door being open now to other possibilities, right? Because, the tool is gonna change, what we're going after remains the same, right? Optimizing the learning time that we have with these students. - Teachers in this district have gone through a series of trainings this year, regarding blended learning and implementation of the Khan Academy. And we're seeing these emerging practices from our teachers that are incredible and they're doing wonderful things with the Khan Academy, with other tools for kids. And so math instruction has really become richer and more engaging for our students. - I inevitably am learning alongside the students and sometimes it's really uncomfortable, but at the end of the day, I think it just is a really powerful experience because then the students are seeing someone in action being a lifelong learner. And as a teacher, that's what I really want, to show kids that it's not just about learning math today or learning science this week. It's about how do you learn for your whole life? - Give yourself permission to not be the expert for a while, and to learn alongside your kids. And that will create an amazing relationship between you and your students, as you discover things together and as you celebrate accomplishments together.