RADAR (Recover, Assess, Design, Assist, Return) supports Northern Tasmanian students who have been disconnected from education. Teachers at RADAR design personalised learning plans for students, referred from local high schools in the region, taking into account their interests and abilities and then work closely with them with the view to students eventually returning to mainstream schooling.
Jeanette Dalton, Advanced Skills Teacher, explains that RADAR offers a re-engagement program for students who have become disengaged from learning whether due to non-attendance caused by illness or other reasons, anxiety around fitting into a big school or other causes. Students are generally referred to the school after a range of strategies have been applied and their overall aim is to re-engage students through community involvement.
RADAR’s numeracy program is designed to support students by initially identifying and assessing gaps in their learning by having students undertake an online assessment. Jeanette explains their program uses Mathletics to design personalised courses which students access during their numeracy lessons one day per week.
“We love the flexibility that Mathletics offers, to address proficiencies but also fill the gaps. Our students respond positively to the instant feedback particularly when student courses are designed specifically for their needs”.
Having taken some time to work with Mathletics, teachers at RADAR have determined how Mathletics best suits their students’ unique needs although they are always keen to learn more. Jeanette explains that their small mixed age/grade lessons typically focus around a problem-solving activity then students are asked to action their personalised courses with set tasks. Jeanette explains that it’s very important for them that students are unable to identify which grade they are working on. The format within Mathletics means that students can still see their own personal growth which they find highly motivating. Teachers have found success in sharing students’ Mathletics results and reports with them know how much their students value having their gaps addressed.
Jeanette explains, because their students have previously been inexperienced with success, the format within Mathletics means that students can easily see their own personal growth which they find highly motivating. By involving students in their own Mathletics results and reports, teachers find they are able to keep students ‘on the radar’ and further reinforce their success!