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Math Pilot: Good or Bad?

Photo by Brooke Riddle.

There is a new online math program underway, and so far the reviews are mixed. Some teachers and students at Camas High School are having a hard time with the new program, while others are open to the new tech-savvy idea. So far, students seem to have a variety of responses.

Administrators and Camas School District leaders came to an agreement about piloting math online for 2017-2018 school year. They decided on this because the new generation is becoming more tech savvy and now Chromebooks are available for every student. 

Some teachers are excited and say they are able to adapt, while some are against the new math online. The program is putting many classes behind in school work. Geometry teacher Heather Seiwert said she “really likes the immediate feedback the online assignments give the students.” Siewert seems very happy and excited about this new change and thinks it can benefit the students by doing new things.

The new incoming freshman classes have had experience in eighth grade doing all of their homework online, so the transition into high school has been much easier. In Adrienne Altmiller’s first year algebra class, many students, including Leah Wagener and Liam Martin, say they “don’t mind the work” and it “doesn’t make your wrist hurt.” But at the same time it is very hard to do work without online access. This has postponed much of the students’ homework.

Many of the freshmen were not eager to talk about the pilot because they liked some aspects to it. Wagener said the only downside to the pilot is when “you get it [the answer] wrong, it doesn’t show you how to finish it.” This has been a problem with many of the students and one of the downsides to the pilot.                                    

The biggest class of high school, the sophomores, have the same thinking about the new math. In fact, sophomores are having the most troubles and controversies. In Siewert’s class Kennady Gardner says, “the program has many glitches that should have been looked into before piloting the program.” Because of all of these glitches, only one person had there Chromebook while the other part of the class chose to do the homework on paper and pencil instead.                                     

Juniors and seniors have gone two to three years without using the Chromebooks, so they are used to the paper and pencil. Mackenzie Bakker, junior, is very passionate about this new change, saying “it is unrealistic to do its job of teaching and preparing us.” In addition to this, they may have to go without the use of Chromebooks or any technology in the future. She also added that “the online Algebra sets up students for failure because they are training us only for testing”. In other words, there are more ways to try something different than adding more technology into someones day to day life.

The new addition of the Chromebooks is helping many people; but on the other hand, they slow people down in the way they work. Each grade has their own opinion and feels more strongly than others. The Chromebooks have put a strain on the people who like writing with pencil and paper more than doing their work with technology, which makes it hard for the pilot to continue.

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