My Math Academy is a game-based adaptive learning system designed to help young children (pre-k through 2nd grade) build a strong understanding of fundamental number sense and operations. It includes 30 games with over 130 game-based activities, covering number sense and operations concepts and skills for pre-kindergarten through second grade. Topics range from counting to 10 to adding and subtracting three-digit numbers using the standard algorithm. Each individual game activity maps to a learning objective and is supported by an interactive instruction level, as well as several layers of scaffolding and feedback. Within individual games and between games, built-in adaptivity provides scaffolding and adjusts difficulty based on the learner’s performance. Across the system, this adaptivity gives learners a customized pathway between skills based on prior performance. Assessment is embedded throughout the play experience, including game-based pretests and final assessment tasks at a granular skill level. In addition, the game system as a whole uses cohesive narrative and interactive characters (embedded at the level of individual games) to support student engagement with the learning world. In sum, My Math Academy combines math curriculum with learning sciences, adaptive technology, and instructional design and production. With engaging characters and scenarios, individualized learning pathways, and continuous assessment built into every level of every game, My Math Academy aims to help students learn and make sense of math in an enjoyable way. My Math Academy’s design recognizes that children learn through play, and it builds upon the natural relationships between learning and children’s daily life activities and experiences via game-based learning contexts, encouraging them to build connections between the math concepts and their developing world knowledge. My Math Academy features easy-to-use Teacher and Administrator dashboards that provide real-time class and student data along with recommended groupings and instruction for extended learning.
Two studies, one matched and one randomized, examined the efficacy of My Math Academy. The matched study took place in 17 high-need schools in Texas with 781 (128 treatment, 653 control) pre-kindergarten students included in the analysis. Each student received a district-issued iPad and was encouraged to use My Math Academy for 45 minutes per week, either at school or home, throughout the school year. Propensity score weighting was used to estimate the effect of My Math Academy on the state administered CIRCLE (Center for Improving the Readiness of Children for Learning and Education) math outcomes. Students who used My Math Academy scored significantly higher on the overall math score on the CIRCLE Progress Monitoring System assessment (effect size = +0.32). The randomized study assigned 20 kindergarten (K) and transition kindergarten (TK) classrooms at four Title I elementary schools in urban Southern California to use My Math Academy (n=233) or to a business-as-usual control (n=195). These schools were ethnically diverse (76% Hispanic, 22% African American), with 100% of students qualifying for free lunch. Each school housed four to six participating classrooms. Each treatment classroom received six tablets with access restricted to My Math Academy and teachers were asked to implement the app in the classroom in small groups for 15 min per day, 3 days per week, for 12–14 weeks. Students took turns using the tablets in groups of six, each student working independently on his/ her tablet, while the teacher worked with the rest of the class. Students in My Math Academy classrooms significantly outperformed the control group in math knowledge and skills as measured by the TEMA-3 (effect size = +0.23, p=.03), qualifying My Math Academy for the ESSA “Strong” category. My Math Academy produced the greatest learning gains in students who began with a moderate level of math knowledge and the more games students played, the greater the learning gains they experienced.
No extra staffing is required from the school / district side to use the program. If desired, Age of Learning will build an implementation plan in partnership with the school district based on historical frameworks of success for districts of similar size and scope. The plan will be adjusted to fit the timeline set forth by the District. Key milestones of this plan include:
- Discovery meeting to understand the District’s specific needs, challenges and requirements
- Development of a comprehensive implementation plan
- Dedicated integration meetings to ensure successful technical readiness
- Launch meetings with key groups to increase buy-in and raise awareness
- Regularly scheduled cadence of communication with various subsets of stakeholders to monitor and evaluate effectiveness data, discuss feedback, and continuously measure progress to the goals set out by the implementation plan.
- Regularly scheduled impact reports with robust data, including aggregate and individualized data by district, school, grade, teacher, and class.
- Access to multiple engagement opportunities with Age of Learning’s internal team and our national user network for peer-to-peer collaboration, best practice sharing, and thought leadership.
Age of Learning has a dedicated professional development team of employees with expertise in adult learning theory, curriculum, and instruction who will work with the district to customize unique training plans for all end-users/stakeholders of the product including:
- Initial live, in-person, or virtual trainings, and on-demand, self-paced professional learning modules to support educators with initial setup and a turnkey and effective implementation.
- Targeted ongoing professional development and regular coaching for Administrators and Teachers to support effective utilization of student data to make instructional decisions.
- Regular engagement opportunities and open office hours with a dedicated Customer Success team to troubleshoot issues, track enhancement requests and report on usage and achievement data.
- Access to a growing library of Professional Development courses built in partnership with Age of Learning’s Data & Efficacy departments, designed to help teachers maximize the benefits of My Math Academy as an educational resource.
Users can use the link below on any device to determine whether that device is compatible with My Math Academy: https://www.ageoflearning.com/schools/systemcheck/
Additionally, the minimum technical requirements for My Math Academy can be found here: