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Practice Makes Perfect

Whoosh_logoEver want to drill students in the basics before letting them go on to the harder stuff, but didn’t have a precise enough tool to do it? After all, Sally might have mastered addition and is ready to get to work on subtraction while Johnny might need some extra practice before proceeding. Whoosh’s online classroom  can help by emphasizing the foundations of modern education while testing kids in both accuracy and speed.

This new online classroom was designed by Dr. Molly Keogh, a veteran teacher to emphasize differentiated instruction where each child progresses at his or her own natural pace. Aimed at K-through-6th grade students, Whoosh starts with a two-to-three minute evaluation test to get an idea of the child’s strengths and weaknesses. Then the program works with auditory, visual and tactile cues to teach, refresh and practice either math or spelling at their level.

Whoosh_student_outcome_page_2There are tons of printable worksheets to further reinforce the material. This is followed by an exam that requires getting a perfect score in the time allotted to move on to the next level. When students achieve this level of proficiency, they get a satisfying “whoosh” sound.

At the moment, Whoosh works with math and spelling, but the company is working on additional curriculum, such as science, social studies and Spanish. There are six levels of math available and teachers can add their own spelling words to the lists that the system works. At any time, teachers can create any of 20 reports to track individual students or an entire class. The system is Web-based so it works on any connected computer with a recent Web browser, even inexpensive Linux systems. Whoosh costs $20 a student per month, but the second child adds $5 a month and a two-week trial is available. 

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