Curriculum Details for
Afterschool Achievers Math
Practitioner Expert Background
Two practitioners were interviewed for this review of Afterschool Achievers Math. One practitioner has been working for twelve years as an instructional support teacher, specifically with math. She works with Title I schools in her district to help maintain high math scores on standardized tests. She started using Afterschool Achievers math about three years ago as an intervention curriculum with third, fourth, and fifth graders who are struggling with math. Students use it for hour and a half sessions, three times per week. Her population of students varies greatly in terms of both economic and racial background. The second practitioner has been teaching for the past nine years, and has been teaching Afterschool Achievers in an afterschool environment for the past five years. She has used it with second and third grade students, who are primarily from lower or middle income Caucasian backgrounds.
- Training was a three-hour session. It was sufficient to get started using the curriculum.
- Initial preparation requires investing time in organizing activities, such as sorting and bagging cards, etc.
- Preparation time is shorter when an instructor follows the manual directly.
- The program is written for a five-day a week program, so it might need to adapted for a program with fewer days per week.
- Ten students would be an ideal group size for this curriculum.
- Games are particularly enjoyable for students, competition helps to spark their interest. They enjoy the change from their regular school day.
- Variety of content is engaging for students.
- Content is mostly age-appropriate.
Adaptability to instructor needs
General skills taught
- Adaptable to classroom needs.
- Can pick and choose topics and games to fit the needs of the students.
Addressing diverse student needs
- The curriculum can teach some social skills.
- Can adapt the curriculum to help teach study skills.
- Helps with critical thinking and problem solving.
- Games seem to be engaging for students of all backgrounds.
- Effective with students who have not traditionally succeeded with math.
Strengths and Challenges
- Variety of instructional strategies.
- Many different types of games are included. These games are challenging and thought-provoking for students.
- Suggested questions are useful.
- Covers a wide range of skills, including critical thinking skills.
- Teacher’s Guide can be hard to follow at times.