Monica Contreras loves teaching math to her third graders.
But do her McKitrick Elementary third graders love learning math?
A few years ago, Mrs. Contreras wasn’t so sure. But today, thanks to the MobyMax tools she’s using, she can confidently say that her students love learning math—though they may actually love MobyMax contests more!
Mrs. Contreras started using MobyMax several years ago to help her students prepare for the annual Florida Standards Assessment tests. She created a MobyMax Science Challenge that resulted in a 20 percent grade level increase in science among participating students.
When it came time to focus on math, Mrs. Contreras decided to run a MobyMax contest. Why are contests such a great way to motivate students to participate? Because “They love watching their stats go up!” she says.
Before starting the contest, Mrs. Contreras had participating students complete an initial MobyMax Math placement test to clarify each student’s learning gaps and lesson proficiency. Next, all students were asked to complete at least 1 hour of MobyMax Math every week the contest ran.
Mrs. Contreras invited several other teachers to join in so they could launch the activity school-wide. By motivating an entire school community of students to work toward the same goal, the hope was that more students would complete more math problems—both inside and outside the classroom.
Launching and promoting the contest was easy. “We announced the contest on our morning show to get students excited,” reported Mrs. Contreras. “The PTA made signs and emailed parents and PTA members. We also promoted the contest on our social media pages, and some teachers sent mass text messages to parents to remind them to encourage their kids to participate.”
The contest ran from Oct 1-29, 2016. After one month, the results were stunning:
- 127,787 math problems were completed correctly
- 437 McKitrick students became active in MobyMax Math
- 24 teachers used MobyMax Math
- 82 students gained 2.4+ months of grade level improvement in math in 1 month
Check out this growth!
Why did the contest succeed?
It was easy to join. Participating students could log in on any computer or tablet and immediately complete MobyMax Math problems and lessons at their own pace while simultaneously competing for exciting prizes.It was easy to achieve. The goal was for each student to spend at least 60 minutes per week on MobyMax Math. All students who achieved that goal earned an invitation to the special fall snow cone party. The top class in each grade level also earned an ice cream/frozen yogurt sundae party.
It was easy to win a prize. Students who completed at least 1 hour of MobyMax Math each week were entered into a drawing for multiple prizes, ranging from gift cards to goodie bags. Students who completed 4 hours of MobyMax Math by the end of the contest were entered into an extra raffle for a $25 gift card and additional prizes.
The entire contest only took two minutes to set up. As for cost, the total expenses for weekly raffle drawings, prizes, and 7 ice cream
parties amounted to only $234. The contest required just three PTA volunteers for 2.5 hours to host the parties in McKitrick’s Nature’s classroom.
Of course, one important question is, ‘What happens when the contest ends? Do the kids lose interest in the subject or start to slack off?’
That certainly hasn’t been Mrs. Contreras’ experience. As we’ve seen in one school after another, MobyMax contests help fuel kids’ desire to keep learning and achieving…and asking for more!
And more is what they received! Mrs. Contreras met with teachers and launched a school-wide Fact Fluency Challenge, taking place for 1 week each month from December 2016 – May 2017. Here are the weekly prizes:
- Week of Dec 1st - Anyone mastering addition earned hot chocolate.
- Week of Feb 1st - Anyone mastering subtraction was rewarded with a bag of popcorn.
- Week of March 20th - Anyone mastering multiplication gets a mini cotton candy bag.
- Week of May 8th - Anyone mastering division gets a popsicle.
Final results won’t be tallied for another few months, but already Mrs. Contreras has seen a measureable uptick in fact fluency among McKitrick’s students.
Want to create your own MobyMax school-wide contest? Here’s how your Moby administrator can set this up in 2 minutes or less.
Have your school Moby admin sign in and click “Contests.”
- Name your contest. For example, call it the MobyMax (subject) Challenge!
- Enter your start and end date.
- Select subject(s).
- Select results based on time or points.
- Choose contest for: My School.
- Click “Next.”
- Select teachers all of the teachers in your school or those specific teachers who want to participate in this contest.
- Determine your awards.
Have questions? Give us a holler at (888)793-8331 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.