Skoolbo Success Story from Thompsonville, IL

In Thompsonville C.U.S.D. 174, a rural district in the south of Illinois, Title I Reading teacher Robin Culbreth decided to try Skoolbo. The result? An amazing beginning to an unfolding story of engagement and improvement! Currently, the Thompsonville Tigers have answered nearly 400,000 questions from just over a month on Skoolbo. Ms. Culbreth shares her experience with us below:

How did you hear about Skoolbo and how did you roll it out to your school?

“A colleague saw Skoolbo on Facebook and shared it on my timeline. As the Title 1 reading teacher for our school district, I thought it might be a great way for our students to work on their literacy and numeracy skills over the summer and help to lessen the summer slide. I wanted to make sure the students had a good introduction to the program and time to play it at school well before summer started. I have half of each class every other day, so I introduced it to each section on the SMART Board. I set up each class and teacher, showed the students how to log on, make their avatar, and play the games. Once all students had been introduced to the game, I passed out the papers from the Skoolbo site with directions of how to log on at home with all of the students’ passwords on them. The students were immediately as excited as I was! I had shared with the teachers the information about Skoolbo prior to introducing the students, but the teachers did not realize how excited the students would be until they returned. Skoolbo was the talk of the school.

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A full house for early morning tutoring and Skoolbo!

We have an early morning “Tiger Tutor” program where twelve junior high students come in at 7:30 a.m. and volunteer their time to help students with homework under the supervision of a teacher volunteer (myself). The students also have this time to work on Skoolbo, which has been a very popular activity. Every computer and iPad is completely full in the morning with students working toward getting more points toward their certificate.”

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Has Skoolbo been effective with your students?

“We have only been using Skoolbo for one month, but we have had several success stories already that have brought tears of joy. It has been a positive experience for our students with Individual Education Plans. Students who are usually unmotivated are now mastering multiplication facts and are very proud of it! A student who loves competition has worked very hard on Skoolbo and brought up his monthly assessment scores in 3 out of 4 categories by a large margin. Our grade school students were talking about Skoolbo so much that the junior high students asked for usernames for the program.  We are a very small rural school district with an enrollment of 141 students in kindergarten through fifth grade and our students answered 212,077 questions the first month. That is a success story for us. And they are still going strong!”

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Proudly displaying student certificates

Can you share some tips for educators who want to implement this at their school/district?

“My tips for success for Skoolbo include ensuring the staff is familiar with the program when you kick off the program. Celebrate the students’ successes as well as the classroom successes. I go into the classrooms about twice a week to hand out certificates and the whole class will clap for the students. We also celebrate when every student in a class has earned 1,000 points (that is announcement worthy!). If your school begins to slow down, offer up a week-long challenge and reward the class that earns the most points. If you decide to print out the certificates for the students as I do, provide a clipboard or dry erase board for the students to sign so you can refer to it when it is time to print certificates. It can be time consuming to search or try to remember.

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“Skoolbo Scholars” — Recognizing Improvement!

I also keep a poster that has the top two improved students in each class (Skoolbo Scholars) and the points each class earned for the week posted on my door. It is easy to find on the leaderboard page. Use the “Set Task” option on the Reports page to ensure students get enough practice on a skill so they can master each skill. This is an easy way to make sure they can get enough practice to master the skill and “graduate.”

This is the first program we have ever had where every child loves it and wants to play it at home. The teachers can have an avatar that plays, the junior high students want to play, and they are learning! The whole time they are playing, the room is full of joy and happiness!”

We are so excited for these students and we can’t wait to hear more about the improvement and excitement that is sweeping Thompsonville C.U.S.D.!

Do you have a success story from your own school?
Email us at info@skoolbo.com!

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

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Cibolo Creek Elementary – over 300,000 questions answered on Skoolbo!

Mrs. Bykowski's class (1st grade) top class with over 35,000 questions

Mrs. Bykowski’s 1st graders are the top class in the school with over 35,000 questions!

These are just some of the 670 amazing students at Cibolo Creek Elementary in Boerne, Texas! Having previously taught in the classroom, teaching Computer in the lab was new territory for Karen Callahan this year. Upon learning about Skoolbo from Facebook and seeing that it was free, she decided to investigate to see if it would be something she could use in her classroom to support the regular classroom teacher’s curriculum.

In her own words…

“Around October is when I first started to implement and introduce Skoolbo to the older grades.  After that, I worked my way down to Kindergarten. Before Christmas break, every student had the opportunity to download the app at home. So I didn’t really give Skoolbo any fanfare, but in all honesty, I didn’t need to. Once the students had the opportunity to play the game, they were hooked. As the months have progressed, I’m really noticing a large surge of students begin to accumulate questions.

After Christmas break, some of the teachers started asking about the program and decided to put the Skoolbo site on their classroom computers that the kids use. As word got around, many teachers asked for the site to be placed on their computers as well. Because of the high demand for it, our technology department did a school-wide download on every classes’ computer instead of individually placing it on one at a time.”

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Pictured above are the Top 15 overall leaders for the week!

Check out how Karen uses Skoolbo features to maximize effectiveness and motivation!

“Now, having leaderboard results, I post them weekly outside of my classroom door letting the students know which classes are in the lead, who jumped up 1,000 or more questions, and which class jumped up from a lower place to a higher place (like 28th place to 20th place).  I also post the top ten individual leaders in the whole school plus the top 5 leaders in each grade.  Students will now stop by my door to check the results for each week.

I am really pleased with Skoolbo and the support it has to offer.  As a computer teacher that has a responsibility to teach computer skills, keyboarding, and give support to the classroom teachers, I found Skoolbo to be very helpful with the core subjects of literacy and mathematics. I do use other educational technology games, but my students are always excited to play Skoolbo.  What I like best about Skoolbo is that it is constantly teaching the kids as they progress through the game.  So in a sense, it is learning in a very fun way. My students also love it when my character pops up to Duelbo them and if they beat me, I always hear about it.

The reports are extremely helpful, as well as the progress reports.  It makes it very easy to reassign a lesson where the student may be struggling.  The extra bonuses for the kids is the option to change their character and buy things with the points that they accumulate.  The younger kids really enjoy it more so than my fourth and fifth graders. Many of my lower grade level teachers are using Skoolbo as one of their learning stations.”

From the students and teachers of Cibolo Creek Elementary…

“ I play it for an hour every day after school.  I am learning my numbers, I am learning to read, and I bought a lot of stuff.  I worked a lot!” (Kindergartner)

“ I play because I want to be really good, or the best at it so I can get more coins.” (Third grader)

“Skoolbo is funner than doing a math paper.” (First Grader)

Presenting the top 3 students in the school! (All first graders)

Presenting the top 3 students of Cibolo Creek Elementary! (All first graders)

“My kids love Skoolbo and were so excited that they also have access at home.  It is such a great program!” (Kindergarten teacher)

“My students love to check the leaderboard and are constantly telling me or their classmates who they are playing against. They love using Skoolbo at school and at home. This website gives my children motivation to learn.” (1st Grade Teacher)

“My students are constantly talking with each other about what they did on Skoolbo at home or in the classroom. Skoolbo provides my students with motivation to keep playing it.”  (2nd Grade Teacher)

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Cibolo creek elementary School inspires the academic excellence that enables our community to meet the challenges of tomorrow.

 

Do you have a success story from your own school? Email us at info@skoolbo.com!

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

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Educational video game Skoolbo a hit at South Pekin Grade School

Untitled design (16)Isabella Lasley, a fifth-grader at South Pekin Grade School, uses Skoolbo to learn math Wednesday. The program, introduced at the school about six weeks ago, helps students learn reading and math through a series of interactive games.

Lori Martin has found a way to help her students reach their true potential in math, and have loads of fun doing it.

Martin, who teaches math at South Pekin Grade School, introduced her students to Skoolbo, a video game with educational capabilities, about six weeks ago. Their enthusiasm for the program has since flourished.

Martin holds a weekly challenge where the fifth- through eighth-graders compete against each other. The top scorer in each class wins a prize.

“We had our Thanksgiving break challenge, which we opened up to the whole school, and we had 150 kids participate,” Martin said. “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.”

The students can work on Skoolbo at home, the library or at school. Skoolbo assesses a student’s level of accomplishment when he first logs on, Martin said, and there is no cost to students or the school district. Martin said some parents play it alone or with their children.

Student Delaney Boyette was the highest-scoring student in the nation for the week of Nov. 22. She has answered 22,491 questions correctly since starting with the program.

“I just fell in love with the game and started to play a lot,” Delaney said. She loves multiplication. Her interest in math has grown under the direction of Martin and Skoolbo.

Student Marya Ritchie said Martin inspired her to keep working on her math. “She brought up Skoolbo and, I was like, OK, I might get the F and I’ll test it out, and then I started playing it a lot and now I’m here.”

Students can play against each other at the school and around the country. There are more than 100 different literacy games and more than 100 different math games to help children excel in school.

Martin and her students have been asked by Skoolbo to captain a team for this year’s Skoolbo World Cup.

“They offered this opportunity to our school not only because of our consistent presence on the Illinois leaderboards with high performances but also because of the energy, enthusiasm and support we bring to Skoolbo,” Martin said.

The Skoolbo World Cup Championship runs through Tuesday. South Pekin’s job as a captain for the USA team is to rally students across the nation.

There are 30,000 schools registered worldwide to participate in the online challenge. South Pekin Grade School is averaging more than 20,000 correct answers a week and has consistently been in the top 100 schools nationwide since joining Skoolbo, according to a school news release.

Make homework fun! The benefits of using Skoolbo for homework

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 Download our print-out form to give to parents and get started with Skoolbo for homework! 

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More and more teachers are using Skoolbo to set homework for their students. Playing Skoolbo at home is a great way to motivate and engage children in their learning activities. The same student login works at school and home, so it’s never been more fun to do kids_skoolbo_homework-2homework!

Skoolbo has been designed with a smart spiral learning algorithm, meaning that the questions in the game adapt to the students ability, guiding them to improve their skills. This is a major advantage when playing from home, as it means that students can learn effectively without too much direction. You can rely on Skoolbo to steadily increase difficulty level as the students master topics.

Alternatively, teachers have the option to use the curriculum setting in Skoolbo, giving teachers full control of what to assign as homework for their students. The Set Task feature helps you to decide what topics you want students to play in their next Skoolbo sessions. Once they have played these set tasks, the Skoolbo algorithm kicks back in, continuing to provide relevant games for your students.

Click here for a quick start guide on using the Set Task feature

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What are the benefits of setting Skoolbo for homework? 

  1. The curriculum setting feature to assign homework
  2. Consolidating work done in class
  3. A fun and engaging incentive to get students to complete their homework
  4. Motivate them even further  – Students can now challenge each other in a safe environment using the Duelbo Challenge mechanism available on v1.9 and above

What teachers have had to say about using Skoolbo for homework

“Skoolbo is a great app that students can use for homework. The tasks are targeted, relevant and help to support our students’ literacy and numeracy needs. Skoolbo is a valuable program for us because of the Smart Algorithm that targets students at their area of understanding and need. This is very important to us, as we are committed to teaching students to their personal goals and their level of understanding.”

– Janis M – Truganina South Primary School Answered 3,693,529 questions, average core skills improvement 46%

“If Skoolbo is to succeed it needs to be part of the structure of the school wide learning, as kids get older they use it independently because of the fun element and parents are happy to see a safe way of doing homework.”

– Carmel N – St Clare’s Primary School Answered 1,440,034 questions, average core skills improvement 39%

“Students love this and parents are using this at home too. It has become a school wide dance” (Zippy Shake). 

– P Street – Dale Christian School – Answered 1,217,920 questions, average core skills improvement 47%

Download our print-out form to give to parents and get started with Skoolbo for homework! 

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PS 176 Cambria Heights soars to all new levels on Skoolbo!

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The number one Skoolbo class in PS 176 and their fabulous teacher Michelle Liotta take a break from playing and learning on Skoolbo to say hi to their fellow Skoolbo Superheros all over the world!

A super Skoolbo salute is being sent to PS 176 Cambria Heights in Queens, NY!

PS I76 has answered over a half a million Skoolbo literacy and numeracy correctly in just a couple of months. Serving Pre-K to 5th grade this school has over 700 students loving learning as they take off in the Skoolbo universe. This school is incredibly diverse with students’ families hailing from all over, especially the Caribbean, speaking many differently languages including Haitian Creole.

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Two PS 176 Skoolbo Superheros pulled Ms Yasmine, Director of Special Projects, aside to let her know what spot they are aiming for on the Skoolbo Leaderboard…#1!

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PS 176ers winning on Skoolbo with teacher Michelle Liota cheering them on!

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These Skoolbo Superheros are in the literacy in numeracy ZONE!

“Skoolbo is a magnificent Common Core resource for children of various academic needs. The students have achieved tremendous success across all academic areas. The learners are actively engaged and able to work independently. Data is easily collected and analyzed by teachers and administrators to assist in the planning of effective classroom instruction. This educational program is used by grades Pre-K through Five. The “At Home” component has given parents a connection to their children’s educational needs. Parents are also given the opportunity to track the progress of their child in an effort to provide extra help in areas of weakness. Skoolbo maintains the students’ academic data so that it can be used year to year. We look forward to using Skoolbo in the upcoming years.” Michelle Liotta, PS 176 Cambria Heights Technology & Library Teacher

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Seasoned 5th grade teachers Alicha Powell and Michelle Cromer all smiles after a training with Ms Yasmine, Director of Special Projects. These two teachers dedicated teachers are leading the students in PS 176 annex to great heights with AND transitioning them to Jr High school with Skoolbo!

Skoolbo is such a big hit at PS 176 that teachers from both building are using it in their class rooms. (Yes, the school is so big they have an annex!)

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PS 176 Cambria Heights nestled in Queens, NY

John Finley rocks…in the heart of Harlem!

Mrs. Gee Waithaka's class in front of their 250k Skoolbo goal board!

Mrs. Gee Waithaka’s class in front of their 250k Skoolbo goal board!

Super congratulations are in order for the first Super Class in the New York City Public School system AND the first Super Elite Class in NY State – Mrs. Gee Waithaka’s class! John Finley rocks! Indeed, this wonderful school community, aka PS/MS 129, has been on quite a roll since they began using Skoolbo and Mrs. Gee Waithaka’s class has led the way by crushing the 50k, 75k and 100k answer milestones in true rock-star fashion.

 

Mrs. Gee Waithaka's class celebrating their 75k answers milestone - the first class to do so in NY.

Mrs. Gee Waithaka’s class celebrating their 75k answers milestone – the first class to do so in NY.

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John Finley’s Skoolbo Superheros proudly display their Super Class Prize Stickers with Mrs. Gee Waithaka (teacher), Ms Yasmine (Director of Special Projects, Skoolbo) and Odelphia Pierre (Principal) L to R.

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John Finley’s Super Hero Scholars hard at work on Skoolbo!

It takes a village. Principal Pierre and Mrs. Gee Waithaka supervise and cheer on students as they work their way through literacy and numeracy modules...and check their leader board status.

It takes a village. Principal Pierre and Mrs. Gee Waithaka supervise and cheer on students as they work their way through literacy and numeracy modules…and check their leader board status.

What makes this small class so special? Everything! They are smart, ambitious,diligent and led by a great teacher, Mrs. Gee Waithaka and a hands on, visionary Principal, Odelphia H. Pierre. It also helps that it is nestled in the illustrious village of Harlem, home to luminaries like Thurgood Marshall, W.E. B. Du Bois, James Baldwin, Gil Noble, Piri Thomas, Darryl McDaniels, Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, Langston Hughes, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., Countee Cullen, Nina Simone, A. Phillip Randolph, Zora Neal Hurston, Alain Leroy Locke, Maya Angelou and Al Hajj Malik Shabazz aka Malcolm X.

Steeped in rich history and supported by powerful role models it is no wonder this amazing group of 7 and 8 year olds has set their Skoolbo goal to a quarter of a million questions this year. The fact that the 250k mark is a goal entire schools aspire to has not deterred this small class,  and we know no reason why it should – they are super-hero-scholars!

John Finley School, located in the heart of Harlem.

John Finley School, located in the heart of Harlem.

With over 500 PreK-8th grade students in their public school we can’t wait to see what the John Finley community will achieve with Skoolbo…we know it will be amazing and inspiring to schools throughout NYC and the world!

“At the John H. Finley Campus School, we believe that all children are entitled to a quality education.  We are committed to developing a child-centered environment and instructional program, which will result in a community of critical thinkers and lifelong learners.  With the collaborative efforts of parents, faculty, students and community, we will empower our students to become responsible, productive and enlightened individuals.” – Odelphia H. Pierre, Principal of John H. Finley Campus School

 

Super Champs at Becky-David Elementary

Mrs. Pray has been a long-time advocate of Skoolbo, so we were thrilled to hear two of her students at Becky-David Elementary have reached Super Champ status! Mrs. Pray said she has never seen a program as motivating as Skoolbo, and the data proves it. Not only is her 2nd grade class ranked among the Top 20 in the United States, her students have answered over 124,000 questions this school year–up from 80,000 just two months ago!

Becky-David Super Champs

Beck-David Super ChampsThe motto of Becky-David Elementary is Be Your Best Self, Do Your Best Work. Truly these students have taken that mission to heart, answering over 10,000 questions each since the beginning of the school year. Way to go!

Student Testimonials

Mrs. Pray also included some fun feedback from her students:

Becky-David Mrs. Pray Feedback

Becky- David Mrs. Pray Feedback

Becky-David Super Champ

Beck-David Mrs. Pray Student Feedback

We love hearing what students have to say about Skoolbo! Do you have a Skoolbo success story you would like to have featured on our blog? Write to us at susan@skoolbo.com and your class could be next.

Superstars at Pine Meadow Elementary School

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Pine Meadow Elementary School: Home of the Panthers

Located in Pensacola, the westernmost city of Florida, Pine Meadow Elementary School is part of the Escambia County School District. We can tell that the teachers at this school take the motto “Preparing Today for Tomorrow” and mission, “to promote the highest student achievement in a safe environment with the help of teachers, parents, students, business partners, and other community members”, seriously because Heidi Chism’s 1st graders are some of the most active Skoolbo students in the country! Ms. Chism shares her perspective of Skoolbo as a teacher:

I love Skoolbo because the students are learning and practicing skills and they have no idea! They just think they are playing a game. I also love that Skoolbo doesn’t frustrate the child. If they miss 3 questions, it removes them from the skill. I love being able to see what skills my students have mastered and what skills they are still working on.

It also allows me to differentiate instruction. I have one student working on multiplication while the others are still working on adding and subtracting. Skoolbo is aligned with our standards so the skills they are practicing are the exact skills the students will be tested on. Did I mention that they can play at home???? I have several students that play at home!!!! Skoolbo is a wonderful program and I plan on using it every year!!!

What wonderful words to hear from an educator! But what do the students themselves have to say about Skoolbo?

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us! This class of 24 has already reached Super Class status, answering well over 50,000 questions on Skoolbo. Keep up the great work, everyone! We are looking forward to even more fantastic things from you all on Skoolbo.

Students from Pine Meadow Elementary School playing Skoolbo and doing the Zippy Shake!

Students from Pine Meadow Elementary School playing Skoolbo and doing the Zippy Shake!

Awesome Feedback from Irving Elementary School

Shauna Toolan’s 2nd grade students at Irving Elementary School love playing Skoolbo both at school and home! Ms. Toolan uses Skoolbo for reading and math instruction during centers. At night, her students take home their devices and are able to play Skoolbo at home. She reports that the kids really enjoy the competition aspect of the game.

“It’s fun because you get to play against different people from other states and schools.”

Irving Elementary School Map

Irving Elementary School

Irving Elementary School is one of eight elementary schools in the Berwyn South School District 100, located outside of Chicago, Illinois. The district utilizes 1:1 technology, which led them to become part of the Apple Distinguished Educators (ADE) Program. The goal of Irving Elementary is to provide individualized instruction that challenges students to reach their greatest academic potential. It’s wonderful to see teachers like Ms. Toolan utilizing Skoolbo to accomplish this endeavor.

Irving Elementary School Students

Mrs. Toolan’s Students Playing Skoolbo During Math Centers

Here’s some of the awesome feedback we received from the students in her class:

“I like it because you can play with friends at school, in other classes, and even other schools!”

“It’s cool because I get to do hard stuff that I’ve never done before!”

“It’s fun because you get to learn!”

“I love it because you can do any challenge – pluses, reading, subtracting, and counting!”

“It’s cool because you can go to different categories, and you can change your character, and you can race with other people!”

Thank you, Ms. Toolan, for sharing these enthusiastic testimonials! We love learning how Skoolbo is helping kids around the country.

Congratulations to Grantfork’s 4th Grade Class!

Terri Lurkins’ 4th grade class is one of the Top 200 Skoolbo classes in the United States, and 3rd in the state of Illinois. Her students have answered over 85,000 questions. Way to go!

Grantfork Elementary School

Grantfork Elementary School is one of only two elementary schools in the Highland Community Unit School District No 5, located near St. Louis, Missouri in rural southern Illinois. Their school’s vision is to create a unified learning environment that gives students the Power to Succeed.

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Ms. Lurkins said the most frequently asked question in her classroom is: “When can we go to the computer lab for Skoolbo?”

Grantfork Elementary School 4th Grade

This is how the students responded when they were told they were ranked #3 in the state of Illinois. Look at all that excitement!

Ms. Lurkins also sent in handwritten responses from her students. Here is what a few of them had to say: Grantfork Like Best 2

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Grantfork Change About Skoolbo

Congratulations on your Super Class status. Keep up the good work! Grantfork Elementary School Super Class