Enhance student practice problems with virtual manipulatives and responsive tools that work on any interactive whiteboard or touchscreen device
Supporting multiple proprietary software solutions for interactive whiteboards was becoming a big challenge for the Math Learning Center. We designed and built an alternative solution that wasn’t time-consuming to maintain and could work with a wider range of interactive touch-enabled devices.
The Bridges in Mathematics curriculum uses an assortment of activities to give students opportunities to explore math concepts, apply their learning, and practice their math skills. Educators use interactive whiteboards to present and demonstrate how each of these work for their students. Maintaining multiple versions of the curriculum activities for the proprietary software of each interactive whiteboard manufacturer was becoming unsustainable and didn’t address a growing demand to support other touch-enabled devices.
We started by researching current use cases and identifying the necessary functionality for a solution in collaboration with classroom educators and the Math Learning Center staff. We then refined the technical architecture and specifications for two workflows: one used by the client’s staff for creating and installing the materials into the solution, and another used by educators for selecting, configuring, and teaching with in their classroom. The solution became an extension of the existing Drupal-based web platform we build for their customers to access the PDF versions of the popular math curriculum, making it easy for educators to use what they were already familiar with.
Since the launch of the solution in the summer of 2016, Math Learning Center has published nearly 2,000 activity sets from the K-5 math curriculum. This represents over 10 times the content that was available in the proprietary legacy software, and took a fraction of effort to create compared to previous efforts. Today, educators across the country are discovering the usefulness and versatility of the digital interactive learning activities and have already started asking for more.