What is the most effective way of engaging at risk student in the classroom? What online curriculum is the most effective for at risk students learning? If these questions can be answered then all students can be as successful.
Options, an alternative learning program comprises of 42 full time and 33 part time students, all of which are at risk students. To qualify as such a student certain conditions need to be applicable, these are but not limited to drug dependency, extreme anxiety, limited school schedule, and depression. Many of these students have discovered the mainstream setting to be unsuccessful. Often these students haven’t had the same opportunities as many of their peers and wish to remain anonymous to those peers. The Options program uses an alternative learning educational pathway to allow these students to be successful and ultimately graduate High School. 19 of those 42 full time students are working on, amongst other subjects, Science.
Each student works on their required Science credit, these credits vary in Science, such as Biology semester 1 and 2, Chemistry, semester 1 and 2, including the recent addition of applied Science, Forensics. Ideally each student works at their maximum potential, however history has shown that this will vary greatly, some students completing a credit quicker than others, some students work 200% faster than peers in a mainstream class, some students however achieve only 25% speed by comparison, this calculation is the length of time taken to complete a semester. Therefore the curriculum needs to be flexible, open to constant assessment. The feedback needs to be timely, curriculum should include lab experiments and the learning management systems will be...
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...nology, however desirable it is, is not a very easy thing. There was yet to be a standardized software that had given standard results since each would give differing outcome when tested on the learners. It was yet again felt that a program could be effective and benefit one student but yet be very needless in another. This was to mean that each student’s need was different and needed to be addressed by different programs. (Darling, 2015).
Through the research it’s clear that at risk students benefit the most through the use of online curriculum with experienced staff guidance. Small group size, low student to staff ratio also contribute towards greater success. The curriculum and its implementation needs to be individualized to meet the needs of the learner. Experienced, connective staff need to guide learners or even act like air traffic controllers.
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