Cycle 1 Data

AR Focus Statement

With students’ instructional levels ranging from kindergarten to fourth grade, several languages spoken in my classroom and different learning styles, my students are not getting the personalized instruction that they need.  My goal is to reach each student using digital technology, various learning styles and differentiated instruction to meet each child’s very different needs academically.

Inquiry Questions

1. Will my second grade students show growth in the area of telling time based on individualized instruction that is tailored to their specific needs?

2. Will the use of digital technology in both learning and expressing learning be an effective way to increase the engagement of second grade students?

Target Audience

The target audience consisted of 25 second grade students; 12 boys and 13 girls in Oklahoma.  The mean age was seven and a half years old.  There were eight English Language Learners (ELL) with one student that just recently moved into the United States.  There were two students with special needs including Autism and an auditory processing disorder and both students receive special services based on their Individualized Education Plan. There were three students in the process of testing for learning disabilities.  The students’ instructional levels ranged from kindergarten to fourth grade.

Summary of Cycle 1

The implementation of Cycle 1 began with a pre-survey to assess students’ comfort level with the concept of telling time on digital and analog clocks to the hour, half-hour, quarter-hour and five-minute intervals.  Students then completed a pre-assessment to gage their ability to read analog clocks and write the time digitally or to read the digital time and draw the hands on an analog clock. This data was used to break students into small groups for further instruction.

I began the unit on time with two whole class lessons just to make sure everyone was on the same page. The first reviewed the parts of a clock and the difference between an analog clock and a digital clock. It also covered specific time-telling vocabulary for the unit such as hour hand, minute hand, analog clock, and digital clock. Students wrote these definitions and drew pictures representing them in their math notebooks. The second whole group lesson discussed the similarities between a linear number line and a clock. The students made number lines out of paper that showed five-minute intervals to sixty. We then took those number lines and formed them into a circle. The students were able to see the similarity between the number lines and a clock. We took it one step farther and showed the five-minute intervals using Unifix cubes. The students were able to make connections between the numbers on the clock and how those worked to show the five-minute intervals.

From there the students were broken up into small groups based on their weaknesses found on the pre-assessment.  Small groups met with me for 10-15 minutes at a time using practice clocks and dry erase boards to practice both making the time and writing it correctly. While I was meeting with groups I was easily able to see which students were picking up on the skills I was teaching and which students were still struggling. My groups changed often as students mastered one concept and moved to the next. Those students not meeting with me were able to reinforce the skills they were learning through games and songs on the SMART board, iPads, iPods or through a class set of school laptops that I wasn’t expecting to be able to use!

Data Collection

I collected my initial data with a pre-survey to determine students’ comfort level telling time to the hour, half-hour, quarter-hour and five-minute interval. Students rated their comfort level from 1 (not comfortable) to 5 (very comfortable). Students also completed a pre-assessment to gauge their strengths and weaknesses when telling and writing time on digital and analog clocks to the hour, half-hour, quarter-hour and five-minute interval.  After four weeks of differentiated instruction, I gave the survey again to determine how students’ comfort levels changed throughout implementation.  I also gave a written post-assessment to see what kind of gains students made in their ability to write and read time.

Data Report

According to the pre-survey 65% of my students rated their comfort level of telling time on digital clocks as a four or five on the survey, while 35% of them rated their comfort levels as three or below. Thirty-five percent of students rated their comfort level of telling time on analog clocks as a four or five, while 65% of them rated their comfort levels as three or below.  Twenty-nine percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the hour as a four or five, while 71% rated their comfort level as three or below.  Twelve percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the half-hour as a four or five, while 88% rated their comfort level as three or below.  Twenty-nine percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the quarter-hour as a four or five, while 71% rated their comfort level as three or below.  Eighteen percent rated their comfort level of telling time to five-minute intervals as a four or five, while 82% rated their comfort level as three or below.

According to the post-survey, 90% of the students rated their comfort level of telling time on digital clocks as a four or five on the survey, while 10% of them rated their comfort levels as three or below. Seventy-five percent of students rated their comfort level of telling time on analog clocks as a four or five, while 25% rated their comfort levels as three or below. Sixty percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the hour as a four or five, while 40% rated their comfort level as three or below. Sixty percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the half-hour as a four or five, while 40% rated their comfort level as three or below. Thirty-five percent rated their comfort level of telling time to the quarter-hour as a four or five, while 65% rated their comfort level as three or below. Fifty-five percent rated their comfort level of telling time to five-minute intervals as a four or five, while 45% rated their comfort level as three or below.

According to the pre-assessment, the average class grade was 50%. The highest grade was 100%, while the lowest was 6%. Students scored 68% writing the time to the hour, 24% writing time to the half-hour and 1% writing time in five-minute intervals. Students scored 92% drawing the time to the hour, 68% drawing time to the half-hour and 46% drawing time in five-minute intervals. Overall, the average score of telling time to the hour (both writing and drawing) was 80%. The average score of telling time to the half-hour was 52% and the average score of telling time in five-minute intervals was 28%.

According to the post-assessment, the average class grade was 87%.  The highest grade was 100%, while the lowest was 33%.  Students scored 91% writing the time to the hour, 93% writing time to the half-hour and 82% writing time in five-minute intervals.  Students scored 96% drawing the time to the hour, 87% drawing time to the half-hour and 78% drawing time in five-minute intervals.  Overall, the average score of telling time to the hour (both writing and drawing) was 93%. The average score of telling time to the half-hour was 90% and the average score of telling time in five-minute intervals was 80%.

When comparing the data from both surveys and assessments it is clear that students’ comfort levels and abilities increased over this four-week period.  The comfort level of telling time on a digital clock increased 55%, while comfort using an analog clock increased 46%.  Students’ overall average scores increased 37%.

Insight

The use of the data from the pre-survey and pre-assessment allowed me to divide my students into small groups and differentiate their instruction based on need. The main weaknesses seemed to be differentiating between the hour and minute hands, counting by fives when writing the minutes, correctly writing the time and telling time in five-minute intervals.  The digital technology and games on the students’ levels, along with instruction that was relevant to each student personally proved to be very effective both in keeping student engagement up, as well as student learning.  The final data from Cycle 1 proved that effective differentiated instruction makes an incredible difference in student achievement.

Surprises

The main surprises that occurred during my implementation revolved around the weather. After two years of using zero snow days, we have had six snow days this year, as well as days with extremely cold temperatures. I did have some students miss days because of the weather, but that didn’t seem to affect their work in small groups. If students missed a day I was able to make that up relatively easily. One other surprise was how the students rated themselves in the pre-survey. When working with seven and eight year olds, you never know what kind of responses you are going to get. In some cases a few of my very bright students rated themselves low in their comfort level of telling time, while some of my students that have a tendency to struggle rated themselves high in their comfort levels. In many of these cases their own opinions of their comfort levels did not match the results of their pre-assessments.

Future Direction

Cycle 1 focused on the students taking in the knowledge of telling time and giving direct answers to questions and problems. Cycle 2 will focus on using that knowledge to explain their thinking and teach someone else how to tell time. Students will use digital technology as well as other mediums of their choice to aid them as they relay their knowledge to others.

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