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Gaining Knowledge from Education-Centric Community Hubs



// Foreword

 

PicScience is enhancing the educational component of youth enrichment centers like the Boys and Girls Club of Daleville by providing a robust academic experience in these informal learning settings. This case study highlights a collaborative effort focused on student achievement. To combat summer learning loss, the alliance leverages state-of-the-art adaptive methods and readily available digital curricula.

Through a diverse coalition, including forward-thinking educators who refined the course in their classrooms during the initial pilot and tech innovators who designed the software framework, the partnership strengthens the impact of instruction. Recent studies emphasize the pressing need to address learning gaps during summer breaks. In response, this collaborative effort provides year- round educational opportunities, preventing academic setbacks and educational disparities.



Enthusiastic 3rd-grade students from Daleville Boys and Girls Club dive into the Math Summer Learning Program.


// Overview

 

This case study began in the summer of 2023. Led by April Spencer, the Boys and Girls Club Director, the initiative aims to address deficits in math. Responding to the need for intervention, PicScience was invited to create a tailored multiplication and division math summer learning program. The collaboration focuses on fostering a comprehensive understanding of foundational mathematical concepts. The program promotes independent learning and self-directed models that empower children to become autonomous learners while encouraging them to seek assistance when needed.


This dynamic ecosystem brings together youth enrichment centers, volunteers, and community members, to create an immersive learning environment that helps to develop essential skills. By integrating Open Educational Resources (OER), the centers access adaptable, state-aligned supplemental resources, promoting student achievement.


The targeted intervention specifically elucidates multiplication concepts, ensuring a seamless progression and laying a solid foundation for future mathematical studies. The program emphasizes not only mathematical advancement but also the overall academic and social development of each student, preparing them for a future of continuous learning and growth.


Change Management


To improve second graders' multiplication skills for a smooth transition to the third grade, Ms. Spencer initiated a comprehensive change management strategy. As the liaison between the school and parents, she began with the use of an assessment tool to pinpoint specific areas requiring intervention. Students' proficiency in addition was evaluated as the foundation for subsequent intervention strategies. Sydney Brackin of PicScience designed customized intervention and enrichment strategies. The PicScience team, crafted a curriculum aligned with state standards, with a specific focus on multiplication fundamentals.


Implementation strategies included seamlessly integrating the developed curriculum into existing lesson plans, ensuring coordination with staff members, and providing training sessions for effective execution. The initiative acknowledged the diversity of learning environments, both informal and traditional, aiming to adapt intervention strategies accordingly. Efforts were made to incorporate engaging and age-appropriate content for second graders, recognizing the value of informal learning environments.


To ensure a comprehensive and adaptive approach, the initiative integrated continuous monitoring and feedback loops, utilizing platforms like Google Classroom and Outgrow for effective tracking of students' progress. The plan included virtual and self-directed

learning modules. The project used data-driven insights, creative methods of instruction and coordinated efforts to produce a sustainable improvement in second

graders’ multiplication skills.


 

The Landscape

Within this dynamic alliance, program development remains in a constant state of evolution. Initially, PicScience utilized their fractions software to assess and assist

4th and 5th-grade students. The partnership was forged with the explicit goal of bridging critical gaps in students' mathematical comprehension, particularly in 

multiplication and division. The Boys and Girls Club of Daleville played a pivotal role as the host for this initiative, fostering an environment conducive to guiding 

second graders into the realm of third-grade mathematics.


Performance tracking using pre- and post-assessments served as a key indicator 

of the partnership's impact. As students exhibited a notable increase in confidence, evident in their willingness to ask questions, work independently, and collaborate, their scores consistently increased throughout the program. This case study vividly illustrates the limitless possibilities for young learners in the Daleville community and beyond. It encapsulates the  transformative potential embedded in collaborative 

endeavors, showcasing their ability to reshape educational trajectories.


Methodology


PicScience's intelligent tutoring software, Zenith, Multiplication Assessment title screen.

 

The program was designed using a data-driven approach, bringing stakeholders, partners and networks together to collectively address challenges in math education.

This approach involved a comprehensive understanding of students’ needs and

specific challenges. Some objectives of the program included fostering math competency and self-directed learning. The collaborative approach instilled a sense of ownership and shared responsibility among all partners, ensuring a unified effort towards achieving program objectives. Ms. Spencer, acting as an advocate for children with working parents, offered crucial insights into deficits and educational needs, contributing to program customization, and affirming the impact of this partnership in promoting math competency and self-directed learning.


Data-Driven Insights:


The Zenith Software tracks and records students' performance. Employing a data-driven approach facilitated by the tracking system, pre-assessments focused on evaluating proficiency in key math concepts, particularly in addition and multiplication. Through comprehensive analysis of the data, PicScience derived valuable insights into students' strengths and identified areas requiring improvement. These data, serving as the cornerstone, guided the crafting of a customized curriculum strategically tailored to address the unique learning needs of each student.


Development of a 30-day Curriculum

Mr. Brackin created and implemented a 30-day curriculum for the program. The curriculum was designed to encompass both addition and multiplication learning modules. It included a detailed timeline with benchmarks and expectations for student progress, ensuring a structured and systematic approach to learning.




Utilization of Various 

Educational Resources


To enhance student engagement and learning, the program incorporated a range of educational resources. These resources included manipulatives, worksheets, interactive learning videos, and assessments.

The use of manipulatives allowed for hands-on learning experiences, while worksheets and videos provided supplemental instructional materials. Assessments were utilized to track individual

progress and measure the program's overall effectiveness.


To enhance program fidelity, Mr. Brackin implemented a virtual component within the 

summer learning program. The virtual feature allowed students to access program materials and resources from remote locations, thereby sustaining continuous learning support beyond the confines of the physical classroom environment. Mr. Brackin

remotely logged into the back office of the classroom platform, ensuring his virtual presence during sessions. Each student was assigned a dedicated tab within the virtual classroom interface. Enabling real-time interaction, the virtual component implemented features such as data streamlining, live commentary, and immediate 

student assistance. Beyond preserving program fidelity, the platform provided a tailored learning experience. The outcomes were substantial, enhancing program accessibility, sustaining learning engagement and showcasing the technology's potential to enrich educational processes. PicScience's program, designed to improve math proficiency, was utilized in summer learning and afterschool settings in Alabama.


The collaboration between the Boys and Girls Club of Daleville and PicScience, initiated in the summer of 2022, led to subsequent collaborative efforts and initiatives. 

This case study underscores the effectiveness of a community organization and an educational consulting firm joining forces to bridge achievement gaps.

 



 





Accomplishments and Data:

The collaboration between PicScience and the Boys and Girls Club of Daleville resulted in improved academic performance.

 

Addition Section:



Third graders were assessed on their ability to solve addition problems. 

The mean score on the addition assessment was 70% based on 3 out of 10 participating students prior to intervention. Student scores increased to 83% after intervention.



 

Multiplication Section:


Third graders were assessed on their ability to solve multiplication problems. Students scored a mean of 63% on the pre-assessment. After intervention, the mean score increased to 73%.






// On The Horizon

Onboarding


PicScience's Summer Program had an extensive onboarding procedure that had been carefully designed to highlight the features of Zenith Math Software. The deliberate layout of the onboarding process walked teachers through tasks, including creating customized logins, interacting with online learning environments, and exploring student performance information— with a special emphasis on test results.



The program focused on the features, interface, and performance analytics of the software, using these data to develop focused enrichment and intervention strategies for the advancement of the students.


To support employees' professional growth, two Troy University students participated in the onboarding procedure, which sought to  cultivate a deep comprehension  of teaching duties and adept use of necessary resources.  The emphasis also included providing employees with the knowledge and abilities to 

effectively locate and use educational resources, with a particular focus on utilizing the virtual platform, Google Classroom. To ensure seamless program execution, 

Mr. Brackin played a pivotal role, dedicating one day to observation and the next three

days to demonstrating effective delivery. This hands-on approach not only

facilitated staff members' comprehension of the program's curriculum and resources but also ensured robust engagement with students.


The onboarding process went beyond familiarizing staff with tools and curriculum; it 

incorporated a strategic communication model. This model equipped staff members with effective communication channels for planning the next steps in students'

intervention and enrichment. As part of this comprehensive onboarding, each student received a personalized module in Google Classroom, tailoring the learning experience to their unique needs and fostering a more individualized and effective educational journey.


Staff Insight

 

The vision that PicScience has for the math summer learning program is informed by insights gathered from staff surveys, which helps to facilitate the transformation of math education. This evolutionary journey continues to be centered around the partnership between PicScience and the  Daleville Boys and Girls Club, which emphasizes a synergistic approach for improvement in math education.


PicScience used the insightful feedback from the staff surveys to create a more self-directed learning experience for the students. This input guided the team in tailoring the program to meet the unique needs and preferences of the students. By elevating 

student voices and incorporating the insights of both staff and students, we aimed to co- create a more impactful and student-centered educational experience.


In response to program challenges, PicScience provided additional support and resources for the staff. The onboarding training empowered the team to address classroom management and engage students effectively. Collaborative discussions with the support team and PicScience team persisted, focusing on maintaining support in the classroom and maximizing student engagement.


Looking ahead, PicScience built on the successes of the previous program while learning from the challenges. Through close collaboration with the Boys and Girls Club of Daleville and considering

valuable insights from staff surveys, PicScience aimed to create a dynamic and

nurturing learning environment. The vision was to empower every student to thrive and succeed in math and beyond.The overarching vision was to continue transforming 

education through a partnership built on mutual trust and shared goals.


The partners envision is outstanding team of educators supporting every student at the Boys and Girls Club of Daleville in their desire to actively participate in their educational journey. The collaborative efforts of PicScience and the Boys and 

Girls Club of Daleville were poised to pave the way for a promising future, driving positive change and creating a lasting impact in the lives of the students served.

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