Introducing ClassBo, the ultimate classroom motivator!

Listen up, teachers! Skoolbo has just added a brand new feature that we know you’re simply going to love:

Introducing ClassBo, where you now have the ability to set challenges for your class to reach a certain number of answers within a set timeframe. You can choose between 5,000, 25,000 or 100,000 answers for your class to reach! These challenges run from two days, two weeks or three months respectively and represent a fantastic, new and measurable way to gauge the progress of your students.

To set up a ClassBo, simply follow the steps below:

  1. Log into your account and click on the ClassBo Challenge button on the homepage.
  2. Click on one of the three available challenges you’d like to set for your class.
  3. Choose a start date, opt in or out for email updates and click “Start ClassBo!”.

That’s it, your ClassBo has been set and the challenge has been thrown down to really motivate your students!

Supercharge your students’ learning outcomes

You can use the ClassBo leaderboard in tandem with our Results and Report tabs to easily identify what topics your students are doing really well at and where they may be struggling. Our task-setting feature on the Results tab allows you set up to two tasks per topic and get them practicing to improve their skills on that topic.

ClassBo is just another fantastic way that Skoolbo can motivate your students to learn, as it immerses them in a fun challenge that encourages improvement and puts them on the right track towards mastering reading and math skills. You can even set a ClassBo challenge over the holidays so your students can keep learning, stay sharp and ensure nobody slips behind!

ClassBo allows you to set up to three challenges at once by picking one of each challenge type and if you really want to show off how well your class is doing, you can even embed the live, real-time leaderboard into your school website!

We hope you and your students enjoy using ClassBo, happy learning!

 

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New to Skoolbo? Register your school and class now to join the Skoolbo movement!

 

Thanks a Billion!

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Today is a brilliant occasion as children around the world have just surpassed a BILLION ANSWERS! We want to congratulate each and every student, parent and teacher that has taken part in this journey to a billion, you are all true Skoolbo Superstars!

It’s very easy to forget just how huge a billion really is, so we’ve got some facts to give you a better perspective on your fantastic achievement:

  • If you counted to a billion, you’d be counting for roughly 95 years
  • A billion hours is a little over 114,000 years
  • The population of the whole of Africa is about 1 billion. North and South America combine to a total of 850 million. Asia is the most populous continent with over 4 billion people!

The Skoolbo vision has always been to help every child to learn how to read and become confident with numbers. With approximately a billion children aged 4 to 12 years old in the world, you’ve answered a question on Skoolbo for every child on the planet and helped us take another step in making this vision a reality!

Not only have you answered over a billion questions, you’ve also achieved almost 10 MILLION Personal Learning Bests. This means that kids across the globe aren’t just having fun with Skoolbo, they’re improving their learning outcomes each time they jump on and play!

Once again, thank you to all of our loyal users for helping us reach this magnificent milestone. Brilliant stuff!!

 

Motivation is KEY, which is why we are giving your students something special this month…

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Motivation is KEY

We believe each student should be rewarded for working hard and achieving results. With that in mind, we’ve got some great news! This month, each student that plays Skoolbo will be awarded 2000 Bo Coins to enjoy whatever they like in-game! So make sure they jump on and join in the learning fun to avail of this fantastic incentive.

 

Skoolbo Works!

Studies have shown that 94% of children master a maths or reading skill after 20 mins on Skoolbo! Now with almost a BILLION answers notched up by all of our users so far, that is a wealth of improvement that has been achieved on Skoolbo!

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Supercharge Learning with our NEW Student Reports!

We’re always improving and adding new features to Skoolbo, both in-game and in the teacher dashboard. Did you know that we have recently added a great new reporting tool for teachers?

The data behind these simple statistics will serve to super-charge your students’ Skoolbo experience, by providing vital information that will allow teachers to prioritize the tasks and topics that matter most!

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Effective Teaching Habits and Skoolbo

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Recently, we came across a great article by Edutopia discussing habits of an effective teacher. With this in mind, we decided to take a look at how utilizing Skoolbo can be conducive to promoting and developing some of these habits:

  1. A Teacher Should Enjoy Teaching

As with pretty much any job, people are always at their best when they enjoy what they’re doing! Teaching is no different, where the most effective teachers are those that get a kick out of making their lessons come to life and love to see the improvement in a child who is learning steadily. Skoolbo can help here, with tangible results and scores for the child being readily available. It’s easy to see any marked improvements in a child’s performance through our scoring system, while the game itself adds a fun element to the entire teaching and learning experience.

  1. Spreads Positivity

Bringing a positive, can-do attitude and energy to the classroom is sure to resonate with and have an influence on your students. As we know, a child is very receptive to adult influence and a teacher that brings a happy aura and demeanour will always get more from their students. Skoolbo is a fantastic tool to have in your teaching arsenal in this regard, as the learning experience is such that a child is rewarded with bonuses such as “Super Suits” when they do particularly well at, say, a mathematical game. This positive reinforcement encourages the child to keep playing and learning, while promoting a positive atmosphere in the classroom.

  1. Always gives 100%

Just as bringing a positive attitude is extremely important, so too is giving your all each time you set foot in the classroom. Putting your best efforts into a lesson is one of the most effective ways to inspire your students to do the same. If you aren’t giving the best that you can give, then it isn’t realistic to expect your students to do so. Skoolbo is particularly useful in prompting full effort, given that it allows for failure at any learning games that the child plays and reinforces that there are consequences to not getting an answer correct. Without this possibility of failure, a child may click aimlessly through answers until they reach the correct outcome. This isn’t productive when trying to promote effective learning and maximum effort from a child.

 

Feel free to drop us a mail at info@skoolbo.com if there’s anything you’d like to share with us!

 

6 Essential Components of Great eLearning

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You’ve probably heard the term “eLearning” thrown about over the last number of years, but do you really know what it is? In short, eLearning is learning that is conducted using electronic media such as the internet or an application. It comes in many forms including, but not limited to:

  • Research tools
  • Class management resources
  • Creativity enablers
  • Shared learning tools

Skoolbo is an eLearning program based on skill-building and below we take a quick look at some of the components that make an effective eLearning program:

 

1. Fun and engaging, but not distracting

What better way to engage people in something than by making it fun? This is especially true for children, where fun is pretty much the number one thing on their minds! There’s a delicate balancing act between making an eLearning program fun and keeping learning to the forefront, as the program could potentially turn into a full-blown game with some learning thrown in. With this in mind, it’s imperative that the “fun” element engages the child but doesn’t distract from the overall goal of learning!

2. Simple to use

Don’t overcomplicate it, nobody wants to spend hours trying to understand something and children are even more susceptible to this! Think about the last time you bought some flat-packed furniture, did you really enjoy going through the pages of instructions to put it together? No? Us neither! The same principle applies to eLearning in that it should be easy to pick up and use, but deliver a powerful end result (like a nice bedside table!). Apple are a great example of this, in that their devices are super-easy to work with but bring enormous satisfaction!

3. Motivating reward systems

What’s the point in putting time and effort into something if you have nothing to show for it at the end? A rewards system is a great way to motivate a child to use the program in short bursts over a long period of time, where the key here is to make sure the child doesn’t become either addicted to, or sick of it! Any genuine effort should be rewarded, but the reward must also be something that the child wants!

4. Opportunity to make mistakes

At Skoolbo we believe in the old adage of “learning from your mistakes”, so we try to create an environment where the child feels comfortable with making mistakes but ultimately wants to rectify them so they can learn and move forward. At least 50% of eLearning programs have no opportunity to make mistakes, which often causes the child to click randomly through answers and is counter-productive to actually learning what the right one is!

5. Learn by doing

An old Chinese proverb says “tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand”. Letting a child become more hands-on and actually attempt a task rather than simply explaining it to them helps keep them engaged and interested, as they are being encouraged to think and interact. Nobody likes to sit there being told what to do and we believe that practice absolutely makes perfect when it comes to eLearning.

6. Teachable moments – Immediate feedback and support

Every parent and teacher knows that there are certain moments when a child is most receptive to feedback and support, and a good eLearning program will get involved at exactly those moments! Immediate feedback and support facilitates self-learning, the most effective type of learning there is. It also helps when the support system is designed in such a way that it becomes less apparent as the child grows less reliant on it!

 

We’ve only touched on some of the key components that promote effective eLearning with this post and we’d love to hear what works best for you, so feel free to drop us a mail on info@skoolbo.com

 New to Skoolbo? Register your class or child now to join the Skoolbo Movement!

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Skoolbo Holiday Fun Challenge | Make the Break Count!

Holiday Fun Challenge

The holiday break is coming and teachers, parents and kids around the world are gearing up for the festive season. I don’t know about you, but we here at Skoolbo love this time of year and get really excited every time it comes around! This year, we’ve decided to make the holidays even better by introducing the Skoolbo Holiday Fun Challenge for your classroom! The game is really easy to pick up and teachers can encourage students to play it as a way of promoting continuous learning of literacy, numeracy and languages over the holidays.

The idea of the game is to give students a 7-day window in which to navigate a step-based board game through playing Skoolbo. Once you’re back in the classroom, students can all compare answers and see how they each approached the game.

Here’s how to play:

  1. Give each student a copy of the board game and get them ready to start on a Sunday, which is when the Skoolbo weekly leaderboards begin. The game must be completed within 7 days of starting it.
  2. Start at “Day 1” on the far left of the board and follow the instructions to complete the task.
  3. Complete the task assigned to each day and follow the blue arrows through to the next day.
  4. Once your class has started, make sure students check the in-game “class leaderboard” to see how they are doing against their classmates and also the rest of the world.
  5. After you’ve returned from the holidays, review the results of each student across all the leaderboards (if students had a picture of his/her characters in supersuits then even better, but not essential!)

You can download a printout copy below:

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A massive shout out must go to Lori Martin, a teacher at South Pekin Elementary in Illinois, who originally came up with the idea of a Skoolbo board game and whose creation served as the inspiration for our own game. If you’d like to know more about Mrs. Martin, she received a fantastic write-up in the Pekin Times which you can read by clicking here.

This is a wonderful way of keeping minds active by using a fun, new way to play Skoolbo, so check it out and don’t forget to let us know how it goes!

If you have an interesting way you use Skoolbo in class, email us so we can promote your awesome idea!

 

2015 Skoolbo World Cup Recap – What a Week!

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The 2015 Skoolbo World Cup is all over and Team Australia have brought home the trophy, beating off stiff competition from the rest of the world after a fantastic week of action-packed fun! So much great stuff happened during this world cup and we at Skoolbo would like to thank everyone for making it such a resounding success. This year, you’ve answered a combined total of 19,026,100 literacy, numeracy and language questions, with Teams Australia, USA and GB all comfortably joining the million club! Team NZ were only a whisker away from the magic million and should be over the moon with your brilliant performance! Let’s take a look at how the action went down as the world cup raged on:

Final Leaderboard

Team GB Trend Setters

Team GB came out of the blocks at a blistering pace and finished the first day on top of the overall leaderboards. They were closely followed by the rest of the world and this really did set the competitive mood for the 2015 Skoolbo World Cup. We knew you were all up for it!

Lucky Number 7

Day two passed and Team Australia struck back for the rest of the world, leapfrogging Team GB into top spot! Team USA and Team NZ were racking up some unbelievable scores and really heaping the pressure on. We were positively peachy when we saw that you guys had taken down over 7 million questions within the first 2 days. Crazy! The schools leaderboard started to take shape, too, with Meadowbrook Primary School of Team GB grabbing a lead they were never ready to give up!

Whirlwind Weekend

The action hit boiling point when world cup fever took hold of the weekend. Nearly 12 million questions were lined up and knocked down by Skoolbo superstars around the world! Team GB took back the lead from Team Australia and tried to get some distance from Team NZ and Team USA, who would just not let them get away. King-Chavez Athletics Academy were starting to make tracks for Team USA in the schools leaderboard, with Bayswater from Team NZ cranking up the pressure!

Battles for the Ages

It was getting close to the end of the world cup and epic battles were happening all across the leaderboards. Team Australia and Team GB were enjoying a titanic struggle on the overall leaderboard, followed by long-time leaders Meadowbrook frantically holding off a late surge from Beverley Manor Elementary of Team USA on the schools leaderboard. Bayswater and King-Chavez Athletics Academy were trading blows and places on the classes leaderboard, with 3 Aussie students doing their best to hold off 3 Team GB students on the students leaderboard!

The Home Straight

Over 18 million questions in and both Team GB and Team Australia joined the million club, with Team USA soon to follow and Team NZ putting in some wonderful work. A very even mix of countries could be seen across the schools leaderboard, with Meadowbrook refusing to let go of that top spot! Bayswater managed to create some distance at the top of the classes leaderboard, knowing a very capable and spirited bunch could overtake them at any time. The students leaderboard was as unpredictable as it was exciting, with John XXIII Catholic Primary School just about holding onto top spot ahead of some incredibly high-scoring competitors!

Final Whistle

They think it’s all over, it is now! A tense final day saw our overall winners, Team Australia, come good when it mattered most. On the schools leaderboard John XXIII Catholic Primary School snatched victory at the last second from long-time leaders, Meadowbrook, while Class 5 at Bayswater did Team NZ proud by taking home gold on the classes leaderboard. The students leaderboard finished with a flourish and top spot went to Team Australia via the student in Class 6 White at John XXIII Catholic Primary School, after an heroic fight to the end with a fellow Aussie student in Class 5W at St. Clare’s Primary School.

What a world cup it’s been and thank you to every that took part and made it so special. We can’t wait for next year and we hope you all feel the same!

And the Winner Is…

Final Leaderboard

The 2015 Skoolbo World Cup has come to an end and a huge congratulations to Team Australia, our new Skoolbo world champions! Over the course of the world cup, kids around the globe answered a staggering 19,026,100 questions. A massive THANK YOU to everyone that took part, we’re already super excited for the 2016 event and can’t wait for it to come around!

We’ll have more on the overall results soon, so stay tuned…

Weekend for the Win!!

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We’re calling on all of our Skoolbo superstars from Team USA to jump onto Skoolbo over the weekend and go the extra mile for world cup glory! That’s right, while the rest of the world is having a snooze or taking a few days off, you have the opportunity to rack up some sneaky points by playing the Skoolbo World Cup challenge this weekend! Just remember, the more time you put into answering as many questions as you can, the better chance your country will have of winning the 2015 Skoolbo World Cup.

You’ll also be helping your schools and classes climb up their leaderboards and be in with a great chance of seeing yourself appear on top of the students leaderboard! Wouldn’t it be fantastic to be the #1 student in this year’s Skoolbo World Cup? Get cracking, kids, it’s all to play for!

Follow #SkoolboWorldCup on Twitter for all the latest info!

 

Introducing Team USA Captains: South Pekin Elementary

South Pekin Elementary

Today, we’re really pumped to introduce to you one of our captains for Team USA in the 2015 Skoolbo World Cup: Mrs. Martin’s 5th-8th graders from South Pekin Elementary, Illinois. We’re also proud to announce that there’s a Skoolbo superstar from South Pekin Elementary’s 7th grade who made it to the very top of the weekly USA leaderboards, answering an amazing 2,964 questions on Skoolbo in just one week! 

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To get their practice in for the 2015 Skoolbo World Cup, the students at South Pekin took part in weekly Skoolbo challenges, where the overall school winner and winners from each class were posted every week by Mrs. Martin. They’re so dedicated to helping Team USA win the 2015 Skoolbo World Cup that they even practiced over Thanksgiving break, getting the WHOLE SCHOOL involved!

The Thanksgiving Challenge was created by Mrs. Martin as a way of keeping the students active and interested in math while always learning over the holidays. Speaking to the Pekin Times, Mrs. Martin said: “We had our Thanksgiving break challenge, which we opened up to the whole school, and we had 150 kids participate,”. 150 students, wow!

It certainly seems to be a big hit as the students wanted even more time to play the game so they could build up their scores! Mrs. Martin will also be running a winter break challenge, telling the Pekin Times: “We will have one for the winter break and the kids are asking for a longer challenge because they will have more time to work on it.” You can catch the full article by the Pekin times by clicking here.

The students at South Pekin love a good challenge, and the Thanksgiving Challenge provided the extra motivation to propel their class to #1 in the state of Illinois and #2 of all classes in the United States last week!

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Clearly, the kids at South Pekin Elementary really love Skoolbo, and they’ve shared with us some of the reasons they love it so much: 

  • Skoolbo helps you with your math, especially multiplication.
  • It is FUN!  It helps me get faster with my multiplication facts.
  • It is a challenge to get a superhero suit!
  • You are learning but having fun at the same time.
  • You get to pick your own avatar and your choices throughout the game.
  • You get rewarded from learning.
  • I love that you don’t need Wifi to play it all the time. It will upload my points later.
  • I love the colorful scenes and 3D.
  • I like playing against the Skoolbo characters.
  • We love to verse friends in Duelbos.
  • I can play at home and at school.
  • I love the prizes I can get in the game and at school.

Guys, we know you’re going to ROCK in this World Cup. USA! USA! USA!

South Pekin 3Weekly Challenge winners proudly showing their names atop the class leaderboards; well done ladies!