Knowre Pre-Algebra through Algebra 2 Courses

Knowre Pre-Algebra through Algebra 2 Courses

Knowre provides cloud-based, supplemental math assistance for students in pre-algebra, algebra 1, geometry, and algebra 2. It identifies gaps and provides targeted instruction and practice, or else students can select topics they want to work on.

Students can jump around to whatever lessons they wish or they can cover lessons in order. They can navigate from a list of lessons or click on lessons laid out visually on a map of interconnected islands. They can also work on concepts from more than one course since a one-year subscription gives them access to all four courses.

Students need to use Knowre’s gold coins to unlock each lesson; it costs ten coins to unlock a lesson. They begin with 100 gold coins, and they earn more coins by answering questions correctly. It’s easy to pick up coins, so students aren’t likely to get locked out for lack of them. But the coin requirement keeps students from flitting from lesson to lesson without answering questions. Students also earn stars as they progress.

Each lesson is introduced with a short comic that presents a real-life type context for the skills covered in the lesson. After the comic introduction, there are generally two or more sets of instructional videos with practice problems in each lesson. As in a textbook, these teach students gradually, adding more complexity to the topic as they progress. If students need instruction on a topic, they can watch an instructional video. Next are practice problems. If students miss a problem, they are given the option to try again. If they miss it again, they can use the "Walk me through" feature described below. The complete solution is shown even if they get the correct answer, which might be helpful for the student who is not entirely sure that they arrived at the correct answer by the proper route."

The final set of practice problems for each lesson is followed by one or more application problems. These are generally more challenging than the practice problems. They stretch students to apply a skill they have learned within a context, so students have to think about how that can be done. These questions along with some of the practice problems will require students to use pencil and paper to work out their own solutions even though they enter their final solution in the computer.

If students encounter problems that stump them, and they don’t even know how to begin, they can click on an image to the left of the problem to use the "Walk me through" feature that helps students work through the problem step-by-step. These include video instruction segments. This approach requires students to enter information at each step to help verify that they are understanding it as they go. If part way through the explanation, the student figures it out, he or she can skip the rest of the explanation and solve the problem. They receive only partial credit for correct answers at that point. All of these options work effectively to help students master concepts without getting frustrated.

While the courses cover all of the topics common to pre-algebra, algebra 1, algebra 2, and geometry, they are designed as supplements to review and reinforce what students should have already learned rather than as your complete courses. Courses teach topics one at a time without cumulative review or tests as you expect to find in comprehensive math courses.

Knowre has an iPad app with all of the lesson content that is available at no additional cost to subscribers. The iPad app uses text recognition software, allowing students to write in their answers with a stylus or their fingers. It also has a scratchpad where students can work out problems rather than using pencil and paper.

Parents can easily log in and check student progress. In addition to general progress reports, parents will be able to see which problems have been solved and which videos have been watched.

Knowre is cloud-based, so you can access it from any computer. However, it isn’t supported on the IE and Edge browsers. You might need to install Firefox or Chrome on a PC to run the program.

I think Knowre should be useful in a number of situations. A student who has a shaky foundation in a previous course should benefit from working through Knowre before tackling the next math course. Students shifting from one publisher’s course to different publisher might find Knowre a helpful bridge in case topics have been presented differently or were skipped. In addition, a student struggling with the way a particular concept is taught within their core curriculum might find a different method of presentation such as Knowre’s more helpful for mastering that concept. Finally, students who just need extra practice can get plenty of it with Knowre without getting frustrated or stuck.

Pricing Information

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$139 per year

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Instant Key

  • Learning Environment: independent study
  • Grade Level: grades 7-12
  • Technology: online
  • Religious Perspective: secular

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