- About Us
DreamBox provides customized learning for Bellevue students | Back to School
By Ronna Weltman
Special to the Bellevue Reporter
Even with the ready availability of calculators, math skills are still essential. Fortunately for Bellevue public school students, a shared commitment among Bellevue’s families, community members and businesses enabled the introduction of an exciting math program.
DreamBox, an adaptive math program that adjusts to each student’s individual learning pace, provides support for students who struggle with math concepts and skills, crucial review for mastering them, and extensions so students who are mastering concepts can enrich their math skills even more effectively.
Bellevue Schools Foundation funded the initial adoption of the program, following a successful pilot in the previous year.
“Programs like DreamBox are a perfect example of what our community does best through its support of the Foundation,” said Foundation Executive Director Roxanne Kröon Shepherd. “We all have a common commitment to supporting struggling students, students who need more challenge, and those in the middle. And of course our community understands the need to help every student achieve proficiency so they can succeed academically and thrive in the global economy. The results from DreamBox have been impressive.”
Somerset Elementary School teacher Hassan Homa explained how DreamBox helped the students in her classroom.
“Using DreamBox has allowed my students to practice skills I introduced during classroom instruction. It has provided additional opportunities to build a strong foundation of math skills used in kindergarten and even higher grades. Because of DreamBox, my students’ thinking skills have improved tremendously.”
Newport Heights Elementary School third-grade teacher Alisha Singh noted the benefits for her students.
“DreamBox is an invaluable asset in my math instruction,” she said. “The adaptive, engaging lessons keep students interested and challenged and allow me to differentiate my instruction with smaller groups of students.”
Of course, when learning is fun and exciting, students stay engaged. Because DreamBox feels like a game, students are enthusiastic about using it.
“DreamBox is fun,” said Newport Heights third grader Tyler Yockey, a student in Singh’s classroom. “You get to learn math with lots of different strategies. You learn to play fun games about math. I like the days when I can use DreamBox. After school, I go home and play DreamBox.”
The program was adopted for all students in kindergarten through third grade in the 2012-13 school year, and later expanded to include fourth and fifth grade students. Although it started as a pilot project funded by Bellevue Schools Foundation, the district was so impressed with its success that it will take over funding in the 2013-14 school year so DreamBox can be in the schools long term, and Bellevue Schools Foundation funding can shift to other exciting education initiatives.
Ronna Weltman is a community volunteer and vice president of marketing for the Bellevue Schools Foundation.