Kramer Middle School in Washington, D.C. continues its focus on improving instruction and investing in technology by partnering with ed tech training leader Atomic Learning. In 2011–12, a blended school model was introduced, which combines a rich, personalized online program with face-to-face time with teachers. The school is now adding the Atomic Learning solution to supplement the blended model.
All elements of the program — including the online instruction — take place in the classrooms with teacher supervision. “With this blended school model, the Kramer staff of strong, dedicated teachers works with students to make the most of every minute of the school day,” said Kramer Middle School Principal Kwame Simmons.
Each day, students have four class periods, including English and math. Classes are 90 minutes long, and for each one, the students are split into two groups.
Students in Group A spend the first half of the class (45 minutes) on computer-based lessons. Each student progresses through lessons based on his or her academic needs and gets immediate feedback on the work. The Kramer computer system also helps students organize their coursework and assignments.
Meanwhile, students in Group B have face-to-face time with the teacher. During this time, teachers expand on what students have learned and clarify areas of confusion. Students get significant one-on-one attention because the group is so small.
For the second half of the class, the two groups switch.
In this way, day after day, students have personalized attention and a lot of control over their work. This combination shows them how to take ownership of their learning — and gives them clear pathways to improve. Kramer is the only school in the District of Columbia with this type of program.
Atomic Learning’s online training, delivered in 1-3 minute video segments, augments the school’s blended approach by providing students and teachers access to over 50,000 tutorials. Content offerings include resources such as classroom tech integration projects to maximize existing technology resource and tech workshops on topics such as Engaging with Interactive Whiteboards and Keeping Kids Safe Online.
“Test scores are rising, attendance is improving, and students are engaged in learning,” Simmons said. “The Atomic Learning solution will continue this trend and engage staff and students alike. ”