Math Learning, Tutoring Comes Home to Families

Math concepts are difficult for students. parents and educators. Even teachers who are trained and skilled in math struggle to give a classroom of students the one-on-one attention needed for mastery. Parents are then expected to pick up that slack at home, often with little time to do it and no training in the way math concepts are taught today. The combination of difficulty (or perceived difficulty) and lack of time needed for custom math learning in the classroom and at home leads to many students getting lost in the shuffle from one concept to the next.

The statistics are telling. In the most recent round of testing performed by the International Association for the Evaluation of Education Achievement, American students were outscored in math by 13 other countries, including Canada, Japan and Korea. The test showed little improvement in American student success in math from the time the first tests were implemented in 1995. Math, it seems, is still outsmarting teachers, parents and students, despite all the efforts to strengthen the math skills of the American public.

Educational technology is evolving so quickly, though, that there has to be a way to narrow these deficiencies. Recently I had a chance to try the personalized math help platform LearnBop, launched initially for teachers and now available for parents to use at home. The new LearnBop Family platform is a math-centered learning management system covers K-12 math topics, including algebra I and II and geometry. Students are given learning paths that they can tap on their own and at their own pace, providing a path for customized learning that complements what teachers are already doing in the classroom.

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LearnBop Family is not a question and answer platform. The material is adaptive, meaning it reacts to the actions of the students, and adjusts lesson plans. LearnBop Family helps every student with each individual problem they attempt, and then it tutors students step-by-step when a problem is incorrectly solved.

An independent study found that students who used the LearnBop platform alongside classroom instruction for an hour each week saw math growth of 40 to 66 percent higher than the average for their grade. LearnBop students also showed 7 to 9 percentage points more growth on post-assessments compared with peers not using the platform. The study also found that LearnBop was effective across gender and ethnicities, too.

That final stat is important because years of educational research tell us that students who come from advantaged backgrounds perform better academically. The reasons for that are obvious enough — parents from  middle and higher socioeconomic backgrounds tend to have more time to help kids learn and often have attained higher educational goals. LearnBop family levels that playing field by giving the same one-on-one, attentive treatment to students from all backgrounds, providing equality in resources for the students using it.

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The thing I really loved about the LearnBop concept is that the content and delivery style was developed by teachers. I’ve often thought that some learning management systems lack that realistic, human touch that goes a long way with students. If learning material is really meant to mimic a teacher, then it just makes sense that an actual teacher should be involved in the content creation process.

LearnBop Family is reasonably priced, at $15 per month or $150 per year, and with each new subscription, another one is donated to student who needs the resource but does not have the means to pay for it. I like that LearnBop recognizes that though its price point is low (individual tutoring costs $15 or more per half hour), there are still students who come from backgrounds that cannot afford it, which I think speaks volumes to the heart of the company.

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Math learning is difficult. One-on-one teaching is impossible in today’s classrooms. Parents want to help their kids but are often ill-equipped when it comes to math concepts. LearnBop Family faces both challenges head on with its learning management system with proven results. If you want to learn more or get your own kids started, head to the LearnBop Family website.

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