Sumdog’s super holiday offer
To bring in the holiday season, we’re running a very special offer.
Subscribe 100 students or more by December 22, and you’ll get two great extras:
- Yenka Mathematics for your whole school: Sumdog’s sister software lets you experiment with 3D shapes, coordinates, probability and statistics.
- Play new games before anyone else: our new games are now only available to subscribers for the first few months.
Snowball is hot off the press this week. Stop the evil chihuahuas in their tracks by pounding their snowmobile with snowballs…
- And there’s a 10% discount for the early birds. Just because we’re feeling festive.
Sounds good? Click here to find out how to get it.
96 new CCSS skills, including fractions and negative numbers
We’ve almost doubled Sumdog’s coverage of the Common Core State Standards this week.
Sumdog’s questions now cover 96 new skills, spread across grades 1 through 6.
The key new areas are percentages, negative numbers, fractions and decimals. We’ve also included money skills - such as percentage discounts, and how much change you should receive.
To try the new money skills, go to the “training” activity on the student homepage, click the “Money” topic under “Select your topic”, and then click “Choose skill”. You’ll see all of the money skills listed.
If you’ve not yet switched to Common Core State Standards, you can do so on your school’s skills page.
"Speed, accuracy and confidence have all improved"
Sumdog’s local and national contests have been a success so far, with a total of 4206 schools taking part since the beginning of the school year.
Two of the UK national winners - both from Scotland - have shared their experience with us.
From St John’s Primary, Port Glasgow:
"St John’s pupils are really enthusiastic and motivated to play Sumdog. They are learning new maths concepts each day and love playing in school and at home. A fantastic site that has captured the attention of our pupils!"
From St John’s RC Primary, Edinburgh:
"The energy from the pupils seems to grow with each passing competition in which they take part, as does their mathematical ability. The pupils were very excited and wanted regular daily updates with this contest. Speed, accuracy and confidence have all improved, and continue to improve, with the help of Sumdog.”
Improved reports on Sumdog
As you know, students answer a lot of questions on Sumdog. And with each question they answer, we gather information about their mathematical skills.
Teachers can use Sumdog’s reports to access this information, and find out more about their accuracy and speed across all the skills. You can choose which students and skills the report covers, and over which time period.
This week, we’ve made some big performance improvements to the reports. They’ll be especially helpful if you’re comparing a lot of students.
Remember, too, that we’ve given every teacher 10 free reports - so you can use them to learn about your students’ progress even if you don’t have a subscription.
"Competitions make them determined to do their best"
Knockando Primary School was the overall winner of one of Sumdog’s UK national contests in September.
Fiona Burness, the teacher who led the team to victory shared her thoughts with us:
"I think Sumdog is a great, motivational, educational resource which improves students’ mental maths ability as they can learn from their corrections which are shown. My class are so enthusiastic about using the website and having the competitions makes them even more determined to do their best."
If you would like to share your experience with us, we’d love to hear from you also.
National Contest Winners
Sumdog’s contests are now in full swing. Last week alone, we had around 1000 schools taking part!
Congratulations to the national winners so far:
It’s not too late to join in the fun - local and national contests are running until the end of December. Find out more here.
Join your local contest
Over the next few weeks, we’re running our biggest ever series of inter-school contests.
We’ve set up over 500 contests in partnership with districts and counties right across the USA. In the UK, we’re working with around half of the local authorities.
It’s free to enter, and there are prizes to be won. To take part, students just play Sumdog’s games. Every correct answer adds to your score.
Click here to find out more - we hope your students can take part!
"The best website for Math"
Long hair & new opening hours
Good news for everyone out there with long hair - and for those who’d like to try the look, too.
Sumdog now lets you choose long hair for your avatar. There are loads styles to choose from. You’ll find them in your profile.
As usual, you can choose the colour - and complete the perfect look by buying clothes, musical instruments and sports gear.
Also, from the start of September, we’ve changed the opening hours of Sumdog’s shop. It’ll close at 9am on weekdays, and re-open at 3.30pm.
Your teacher can also open the shop during these hours, by starting a lesson.
Hints for the new school year
We’ve had a few questions about how to manage your students’ accounts and classes at the start of a new school year.
To help you out, we’ve recorded this video:
Hope it’s useful! Remember we’ve got loads of other helpful videos, too.
Sumdog Contests - Fall 2012
This fall we are running the largest series of math contests the country has ever seen.
Last year, over 5000 schools took part, with students answering 25 million math questions a day. Teachers saw significant improvements in test scores: read more about one contestant’s experience.
You can join your local contest, and check out the new rules, here.
If we’ve not got a local contest for your area yet, you can join one of our weekly national contests. And if you give us a contact in your district office to help choose the best dates, we’ll try to set up a local contest for you.
(Schools in the UK can find out how to join their local contest here).
Adding new students to your school
For many schools, it’s the start of a new school year. If students who already have Sumdog logins are joining your school, here’s how to add them to your Sumdog account.
We wrote a few weeks back about how to remove students who are leaving your school from your Sumdog account.
Once students have been removed, they can apply to join a new school. To do this, they log in, and go to their profile page. Here, they can click the Settings link (at the bottom left of the page) and apply to join your school.
To identify your school, the new students need to type your school code. Teachers can log in and find (or change) the school code on the school settings page.
When the student has applied to join the school, a teacher will need to log in and accept them from the student page.
Once that’s done, the students are part of your school’s account - and they’ll retain all of their Sumdog progress from their old school.
Sumdog’s new lesson dashboard
Sumdog’s new lesson dashboard lets you monitor your class while they play Sumdog. It’s a major new feature that’s available to all teachers, even those without subscriptions.
When you log in, you can choose to set up a lesson. Choose the class, their activity, the start time and the duration, and you’re ready to go.
On the left of the page, status lights show what each student is doing:
- green shows they’re playing a game or on the homepage;
- orange shows they’re in the shop or on their profile page;
- red shows they haven’t answered any questions in the last 5 minutes.
Beside these lights, you can choose which metrics to view for each student: questions answered,
Live lesson updates
On the right of the page, we give you live updates as your lesson runs.
We’ll tell you about students who are answering quickly, answering slowly, mastering skills, having trouble or doing well.
We’ll also tell you when students start completing the activity, or when a student needs some new skills to work on.
We hope you like it! As ever, please let us know your thoughts.
Changes to Sumdog’s reports and activities
Until now, Sumdog’s progress reports have only covered students for whom your school has purchased a subscription.
After talking to teachers, though, we’ve made a couple of changes.
From now on, you can run up to 10 free reports covering unsubscribed students. (For subscribed students, there’s no limit on the number of reports you can run.)
On our new lesson dashboard, you can choose to view live data on unsubscribed students up to 25 times. (There’s no limit if your lesson only includes subscribed students.)
Finally, you can create up to 5 activities that include unsubscribed students. (Once again, there’s no limit on activities that include only subscribed students.)
Here’s a summary of what’s free, and what you get when you subscribe.
Sumdog and Single Sign-On
Good news for schools in New Zealand. We’ve been working with the Ministry of Education, and as a result they can now use single sign-on (SSO) to access Sumdog.
Regions that use single sign-on have a system that lets teachers and students log-on once to access multiple online services. This means that students don’t need to remember a different username and password for each service.
Schools in New Zealand can enable SSO for Sumdog, by visiting the school settings page (you’ll need to log in) and following the instructions.
We’d like to set this up for schools elsewhere, too. If you’re interested, please let us know more details - including contact details for your SSO system provider - and we’ll see what we can arrange.