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Announcing Edmentum’s 2021 “Design Your Own Study Island Contest” Winners

Announcing Edmentum’s 2021 “Design Your Own Study Island Contest” Winners

This spring semester, teachers from across the U.S. designed their own Study Island contests to motivate their students with a little friendly competition. Using our flexible, step-by-step toolkit, educators inspired students as they mastered state standards!

More than 80 educators from different classrooms, grade levels, and schools created their own exciting contests and shared with us their unique contest plans for a chance to win a $500 Target gift card for their school. We are excited to announce our winners: Pleasant Hope Middle School in Pleasant Hope, Missouri; Duff-Allen Central Elementary in Eastern, Kentucky; and Central Elementary in McArthur, Ohio! Let’s dive into the engaging and effective contests they created and share their top tips for success, in both virtual and in-person learning environments.

 

Q: Describe your contest plans.

 A: Cheryl Fletcher, Pleasant Hope Middle School

My 6th grade students at Pleasant Hope Middle School will work to compete for two weeks during our review period for state testing (April 27 to May 11, 2021). The students will begin by taking the [MAP Grade-Level Assessment for grade 6 mathematics], and any area in which a student still needs improvement will be eligible for points toward a percentage of improvement. Students will set individual goals and monitor their improvement. I will make sure goals are challenging and attainable.

A: Sandra Stapleton, Duff-Allen Central Elementary

Grade 8 at Duff-Allen Central Elementary challenged the entire school for bragging rights! I set the contest to begin on February 15 and end on April 15, with three levels of prizes. Classroom teachers [assigned] selected content to be practiced during this timeframe as a content-skills' review prior to benchmark assessments. The goal was to successfully obtain as many Blue Ribbons as possible and be the school's grade-level, class, and even individual winners.

A: Amanda Frasure, Central Elementary

I teach three 5th grade ELA classes, 16 students in each class, through in-person education. The contest is two months long (and is used as a review for state assessments), and students work on Study Island daily. There are three goals they are working toward (they are class goals): 50 points, 150 points, and 300 points.

Q: How did you motivate and reward participating students?

A: Cheryl Fletcher, Pleasant Hope Middle School

Students who earn new Blue Ribbons [are allowed to choose prizes from my prize bowl for each [Blue] Ribbon from an area of improvement needed. The prize bowl is used throughout the year for students who earn 90 percent or higher on quizzes and tests and for successful bell work. Prizes typically include candy, school supplies, and novelty toys. Adding the possibility to earn prizes for improvement added the incentive needed to help motivate students to finish strong with the year-end review. Certificates [are] provided for students who have earned all 6th grade math Blue Ribbons throughout the year and for students who meet their goals. Announcements [are] made schoolwide.

A: Sandra Stapleton, Duff-Allen Central Elementary

The grade level with the highest number of Blue Ribbons earned received public bragging rights, and the school [made] social media announcements. The class level with the highest number of Blue Ribbons earned received a "free" day in the subject of their choice. The individual winner received a sponsored gift card from their choice of Amazon or iTunes. I utilized the Study Island–provided templates to create an initial announcement for the contest and posted it on the school's Facebook account and streamed it on the 8th grade Google Classroom. I also shared the flyer with all teachers within the school so they can upload to their own classroom pages. Teachers and administrators motivated students by consistently posting Google Classroom–streamed announcements and used Facebook for family reminders.

A: Amanda Frasure, Central Elementary

Each Study Island [class session ]time begins with me going over the lesson or a specific topic. After I review the lesson, my students are given 20 to 30 minutes to practice what they have learned by trying to earn a Blue Ribbon. Once they earn a Blue Ribbon, they get to ring the Blue Ribbon bell. This is a notice to everyone in the class of their success, and the other students clap and cheer for each other when Blue Ribbons are earned.

At the end of the class, I run a Blue Ribbon report (through School Reports) to see how many of my students have earned Blue Ribbons. Students earning Blue Ribbons get to shoot a basketball. I have three lines in my classroom: a one-point line, a three-point line, and a five-point line. If a basket is made, the points go on a chart for each class. When the class, as a group, earns 50 points, they receive their first prize—150 points earns a second prize, and 300 earns the final prize (prizes range from something small like a mini candy bar, to something a little larger like a full-size candy bar, to the last prize being an ice-cream party). So, my students have to master the topic and earn a Blue Ribbon in order to earn the opportunity to shoot the basketball to earn points toward a class goal.

I also keep a chart with all my student's names and the Study Island ELA topics, and when my students earn Blue Ribbons, they get a star sticker to indicate their success. Lastly, I keep a separate chart for all three of my classes and use gold-star stickers to indicate when a class has ALL earned Blue Ribbons on a topic. I show them my Sensei page, and they battle the other classes to have the most topics where all students have earned a Blue Ribbon.

Q: What do you and/or your students love most about Study Island as we navigate this school year?

 A: Cheryl Fletcher, Pleasant Hope Middle School

I appreciate that Study Island challenges students and aligns well with [Missouri Learning Standards]. I challenge students throughout the year by expecting them to obtain at least 70 percent on all content. Students who started out reluctant are starting to feel more successful in their math skills. This contest is coming at an opportune time to further encourage them to be proficient in all areas of 6th grade math.

A: Sandra Stapleton, Duff-Allen Central Elementary

I love the fact that Study Island provides specific Kentucky standards–based content for easily assigning material to students. The students love the fact that they can work at their own pace, see immediate results, and receive timely feedback that makes sense for them to learn. I feel like an effective moderator who is available when students have questions or want to learn more about a topic he/she is practicing in Study Island. I can address the entire class at once or work with specific students at a time. It's not just about a teacher assigning one content task to an entire grade but an entire grade learning about multiple topics within the same content.

A: Amanda Frasure, Central Elementary

What I love most about Study Island is that the lessons are short and concise. It is a great way to review a topic, and by rewarding my students individually when they earn a Blue Ribbon (with the Blue Ribbon bell) and then by having them work together to earn points for a class goal, they really want to be successful for themselves but also for the class to earn prizes. It is also nice that if any of my students have to quarantine (which has happened multiple times this year), I can email them and let them know the topics we are working on, and they can review the lesson and try for a Blue Ribbon at home. When they return to school, I let them shoot the basketball so they don't get behind. I also love the read-aloud accommodation for my struggling readers—this gives everyone a fair and equal chance for success and mastery.

Did you find any ideas you’d like to snag from this blog post that you’d like to put to work in your classroom? Our Design Your Own Study Island Contest giveaway may be over, but learning never stops! Continue leveraging our contest toolkit to create exciting Study Island contests that motivate and inspire students to achieve standards mastery.  Get started on designing your very own Study Island classroom contest today!

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Brittany Becker

Brittany Becker currently serves as a Marketing Specialist at Edmentum, and has been with the company since 2016. Before her time at Edmentum, Brittany studied both Early Childhood and Elementary Education, and eventually went on to teach 4th grade in Title 1 schools. Because of her background in education, Brittany is passionate about providing educators across the United States and the world with the tools and best practices to empower their students each day in the classroom.