Using Khan Academy for self-paced practice

How to allow students to develop an individualized pathway through Khan Academy content .


In this model, teachers use Khan Academy as a tool for students to practice a year’s worth of subject material at their own pace, with less direct guidance from a teacher.
This model is especially popular for:
  • Teachers using math Missions, MAP Recommended Practice, and/or Official SAT Practice
  • Support, resource, or special education teachers
  • Credit recovery courses

When is Khan Academy used?

Highly flexible. This model could be used in-class or out-of-class.

What content is typically assigned:

  • Math missions
  • MAP recommended practice
  • Official SAT Practice

What is the cadence for assignments?

When using self-paced practice, teachers may choose not to assign individual skills to students. Instead, teachers can direct students to the appropriate mission, which combines all the skills for a grade level (ex. 7th grade mission) or topic (ex. pre-Calculus).
Teachers may also combine self-paced practice with other models by choosing to periodically assign skills to students.

How does a teacher guide students to the right content?

Missions: Teachers either assign the grade-level mission to students or use a self-created diagnostic or previous year’s test results to place students into distinct, differentiated missions.
Map Recommended Practice: Teachers input student’s MAP scores and use the personalized practice recommendations.
Official SAT Practice: Teachers have students link their College Board accounts and past PSAT and/or SAT scores to generate a personalized learning pathway.

How do teachers grade missions?

Some teachers grade missions based on overall mission mastery percentage (as viewed in the Progress tab of each class on the Coach Dashboard). Teachers may expect certain milestones throughout the school year (example: at least 20% mastery by end of October, at least 50% mastery by end of January, etc.)
Other teachers incorporate a time requirement and expect students to practice for 30, 60, or 100 minutes per week in addition to reaching specific mastery benchmark goals.

What does a teacher do with mission data reports?

Teachers check the Progress tab to see overall class progress on their designated mission.
  • The student screen provides a snapshot for teachers to identify students who are behind, on-track, or exceeding their mastery percentage goals.
The skill portion of the Progress tab allows teachers to:
  • Identify specific skills where several students are struggling. This helps a teacher identify topics for small group or whole-class instruction.
  • Identify potential peer tutoring pairs. Teachers often pair students who have mastered skills with students who are struggling on that same skill.

Teacher routine

First day and week

Teacher explains:
  • Idea of mastery-based learning and self-paced practice
  • The grading policy for Khan Academy self-paced practice
  • The difference between practice exercises and mastery challenges (if applicable)

Ongoing use

Before class
  • Teacher scans student portion of Progress tab for students to celebrate or encourage
  • Teacher scans skill portion of Progress tab and sets up peer tutoring pairs, identifies topic for in-class review
During class
  • Teacher announces peer tutoring pairs and writes name and topic on whiteboard
  • Teacher works with small group or entire class on review topic
  • Teacher may monitor the Activity tab as a classroom management tool, providing a way to verify students are staying focused and on-task while practicing on Khan Academy.
  • Teacher circulates throughout the room and provides 1-on-1 help while students are practicing
After class
  • Teacher may enter grades into gradebook
  • Teacher may adjust topic for next day’s direct instruction based on student practice results