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KnowRe is an interactive game-like environment that provides mini math lessons, practice exercises, review, and chapter tests for students. Each lesson is accompanied by a comic strip that depicts a real-life application of math, a video of the concept being taught, and multiple practice exercises for students to complete. Students earn coins as they move through the curriculum on a map. KnowRe allows the teacher to assign specific lessons to students, as well as to reinforce lessons and review, as they track student progress through the content. The teacher dashboard allows teachers a quick overview of where students stand, and allows teachers to differentiate based on student achievement. Currently, KnowRe offers a Pre-Algebra and Algebra I curriculum, with plans to offer Algebra II and Geometry in the near future.
Quality and Effectiveness: KnowRe lesson videos are high quality and short enough to keep the attention of students. They break down mathematical concepts into small components to help target understanding of the entire process and are great for re-teaching, review, or introduction of a topic. The practice exercises are appropriate to the lesson materials, and offer more than 900 “just-in-time learning” videos that are specific to the particular step for which the student needs help, as well as give an explanation when the correct answer has been entered. For more complex problems, there is a “walk me through” option to help students see the steps involved in the process. Students are rewarded each time they get a correct answer as they work through the practice problems, and are offered reinforcement when they do not achieve a correct answer. The lessons are aligned to Common Core Standards, although the map has not yet been overlaid with the alignment.
Ease of Use: Without the use of tutorials, the dashboard is not overly intuitive. Fortunately, there are video tutorials for teachers, and a knowledge base where many common questions are answered. A nice feature would be to offer the tutorial videos to students when they are logged in, in case they are working with KnowRe at home. Screen resolution may affect your experience.
Creative Use of Technology: The graphics are age- and content-appropriate. The gamification aspect makes students want to strive to earn more stars and points. They earn coins for correct answers as they practice their skills and stars for completing the lessons. The coins are spent to unlock new lessons, ensuring that students work to gain coins to complete their assigned work. The main value of KnowRe is its ability to assess where students are having difficulties in concepts, by evaluating skills on a granular level and providing additional support and practice for concepts that need it. The dashboard offers teachers a snapshot of the entire class, as well as an in-depth look at individual students’ progress.
• Student engagement: The gamification of the lessons and practice will help motivate students to practice math skills while earning coins and stars.
• Differentiation: Students who need re-teaching can be assigned additional problems by teachers; students who are ready to move ahead may do so while freeing the teacher up to work with those who need remediation.
• Accountability: The teacher dashboard offers teachers a snapshot of student learning, and also allows them to see where the students are struggling individually and as a class, which helps teachers know what to focus on.
OVERALL RATING: KnowRe is a great product to support math instruction for Pre-Algebra and Algebra while engaging students in a gamified version of learning. The teacher dashboard offers the ability to assign specific lessons, with a number of practice problems personalized by KnowRe.