Thomas Klett

Story City, IA

Thomas Klett
Roland-Story High School
Story City, IA
How do you use Actively Learn in your classroom?

In-class reading and assigned reading for homework

What problems were you experiencing in your classroom or school prior to adopting Actively Learn? 

Having students complete reading has always been a struggle. It would require a lot of formative assessments and other paperwork to keep track of it.

What solutions did you try to address problems in your school/classroom prior to adopting Actively Learn? 

I'd try to start the class with a quick formative assessment or end the class with an exit ticket. That could easily be over 100 items to check on any given day.

How has Actively Learn helped improve your students’ learning and/or your teaching? 

Being able to interact with students as they read a text is really awesome. It allows me to provide more thought-provoking questions to students who already get it, while it lets me identify early on students who may be struggling to understand. Being able to add comments or multiple-choice questions or free-response questions really provides a lot of options to accomplish the goals for the class or meet standards.

How do you use Actively Learn with your students? What type of content do you assign? 

I often will assign public domain texts that are available for free on Actively Learn, or I will use internet sites.

What advice would you have for teachers who are new to Actively Learn? 

Take time to teach students the basics of the site before assigning too much. Show them how you are an active reader when you encounter a text. Sometimes I'll start the year with a short reading assignment and show them what I think of as I read. I'll add comments to it and explain my thoughts. I'll also add questions for them as we read so they can see how I approach a text and how I think about what to ask them to answer about a text.