I Am Learning

Adelaide Primary School took advantage of a trial of I Am Learning a few weeks ago and on the back of some very positive feedback from the pupils and the use the product got out of school hours, signed up for a year.

It’s been in place since half term and the school is still to arrange it’s training session from I Am learning (the idea is to train 3-4 staff to become the in-house champions), so in the meantime, I’ve been setting homework and keeping an eye on pupils’ activity with the software.

My initial impressions are very positive, matched by the pupils too. I’ve set the occasional piece of homework and the take up has been pretty good, especially as Y6 already have a programme set up. At the moment, it’s all voluntary, which makes responses even more pleasing when it’s completed.

Apart from the homework  that I set, pupils are free to complete exrecises from a range of  subjects across the curriculum. As they progress, they’re rewarded with credits which they can spend to unlock games or purchase accessories for their avatar.

I Am Learning keeps a very impressive record of pupil activity from whole-school useage figures  down to individual question level for each pupil.

I’ve dug round the various reports trying to think of something I’d like to find out and so far even my more obscure queries have been answered by the system.

At the moment, the homework has been set for each class/year group from the huge bank of questions I Am Learning has in its databse, but it is possible to consruct your own sets of questions and allocate these out to years, classes, small groups or even individual pupils.  And the beauty is, it’s all self-marking. Phew! There are even past SAT papers to call upon.

One surprise some pupils had was when they looked at their own results and some were quite low. It turned out that the reason was they began a test but didn’t finish it, so as far as IAL is concerned, it was a 4/20 job and it duly reported this. Once explained to the pupils.. or explained again, to be precise, some opted to retake the test and improve their average score.

As expected, some pupils can’t, or choose not to, access from home, but at the time of writing, 80% of total use use is outside school hours.

The next stpes are to arrange the onnine training session and create a survey for the pupils to complete (built into IAL) to  gauge enjoyment and see if the puils not only enjoy it, but really think it’s helping them learn. Conversations and IAL messages suggest it is doing both.

It’s still early days in the IAL stakes and certainly too early to confirm any educational gains, but if asked the question ‘Is it providing motivation, engagement and value? then the answer is yes to all 3.

Please feel free to contct me if you’d like to know more and if you’d like a free trial of I Am learning, then follow this link to request one.

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2 Responses to I Am Learning

  1. Paul Wright says:

    This term sees me supervising a booster class after school on a Thursday and at the school’s request, my task is to get the best out of them using I Am Learning.

    I’d introduced it to the school last year, but never really got that involved as it wasn’t my mandate, so whilst I’d had a brief look and blogged about it, my musings were very much written from a 1st impression perspective. A term in to my booster class, I’m more aware of the, now updated, software and it’s potential and motivation for pupils.

    So, motivated pupils? Totally. The system keeps a records of their scores and ‘traffic lights’ their results and I’ve been more than pleasantly surprised how keen the pupils are to improve their scores by retaking tests without prompting from me. This is particularly true when time dictates that only a fraction of an exercise is completed as the system records the results of questions answered, so 2 correct out of a possible 10 is 20%, even though the pupils hasn’t made a mistake. Hope that’s clear!

    As their results are available to them visa their own virtual studio it doesn’t need me to log-in an remind them. They just do it. They also frequently use the facility to see which questions they got wrong….often accompanied by a groan when they spot the daft mistake.

    As a teacher I can, of course, see everyone’s results. A very useful feature for me is that I have set up a group with just my booster pupils in, so I can quickly call up just these pupils and check on their use and progress.

    The last session before 1/2 term, I gave all of KS2 the last ICT session to re-visit I Am Learning and whilst the overall ‘time online’ leaderboard is led by my booster group, there are a number of pupils who are not far behind them and the vast majority of this use is out of school for these pupils. That can’t be bad.

    There are still some aspects of the software I’ve not yet got to grips with. The newly introduced Buddy System for one where pupils can create buddy lists (but not in a Facebook way and acquire hundreds) and have challenges between themselves. My feeling is that if they’re that keen to use it, they’ll figure it before I do, so I’ll ask one of them.

    I Am Learning costs £395 pa for a primary school and whilst I’ve still to master it all- will I ever?- the feedback from pupils, my use with the booster pupils and use it gets from pupils convinces me that it is very good value for money. It’s another tool in a school’s armoury to raise standards, but the fact that it does this by engaging pupils to use it voluntarily makes it a winner.

  2. Paul Wright says:

    I was right about the Buddy System in I Am learning. It’s happening without me. 🙂

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