Overview of my KA classroom: Bryan Harms, 8th grade

About me

I have been teaching math and science in a project based school in Chula Vista, CA for the past 5 years. In a previous life I was a computer programmer and a gardener. I have never done anything nearly as challenging or as rewarding as teaching.

Bryan Harms & Students

How I use Khan Academy

I use it to do all the things it can do better than I can. I use it to help kids develop procedural fluency. Khan Academy provides infinite exercises, actionable data and intelligent assessment of student mastery. I use it to free me up to do the things that I do best. I spend my time in conversations with small groups of students about in depth problems.

How my classroom changed

My student to teacher ratio has been effectively halved. Half of my students work independently at Khan Academy work stations and half engage in collaborative problems solving facilitated by me. I have more time to focus my students learning not only on the content of mathematics but also on the habits and practices of problem solvers and mathematicians.

Biggest challenges

  • Taking the leap, accepting that I needed to make a change in my classroom and then making it.

  • Early on there were problems with some of the data I was getting from reports. This has been resolved.!

  • Still looking for rudimentary skills practice and mental math practice, still wish there was more of this on Khan. Looking for solutions, any ideas?

  • Still looking for perfection, still have kids who work below their potential, still have kids that I do not reach. 

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