Summer is here! Hopefully, you get a chance to take a deep breath this summer; it is certainly well deserved. This month’s updates should not radically impact any of your experiences. Many of these updates are aimed at creating more convenience for teachers and increasing content.
Summer housekeeping notes
On August 1, we will mark all assignments created before June 1 as complete. This will clear previous teacher assignments out of student accounts so that students can start fresh for the school year. Additionally, assignments older than two months are likely no longer relevant.
This year, we will not be automatically increasing student grade levels. We do have a “bulk change grade level” feature on the Roster tab already. We’ll remind teachers about this feature closer to back to school.
We do not and will not clear or reset any student data. Students will not need to retake pretests and will not lose any coins, etc. If desired, teachers can select to reset math/ELA levels from the Levels reports.
Changes to assignments
Teachers can toggle between the old Assignments view and a new By Student tab that allows them to quickly identify incomplete or completed assignments from the last 30 days by individual student.
Teachers can click on each assignment name to open a tooltip with its full assignment name and a quick link to its report if available.
With distance learning, there have been increasing requests to make more assignment types compatible with the Assign for the future feature. We are happy to report that teachers can now assign Fact Practice ahead of time.
To round out the assignment changes, we have changed the name of Focus Mode to Assignments First Mode. We think Assignments First Mode makes clearer what is being enabled when teachers opt into this feature. Do note that this feature is still only unlocked for premium users.
New DOK Challenges & Algebra 1 IBLs
There are now 45 new DOK Challenges for the Measurement and Data (MD) domain. As a reminder, DOK Challenges are rigorous multi-question challenges that are shown to students after they master a standard. DOKs are also assignable by teachers and are great to use as fun and engaging challenge problems. We hope you check them out!
Additionally, we released our first batch of Algebra 1 IBLs that are accessible by both free and premium users. This includes nineteen projects that connect Algebra 1 concepts to real-world applications through engaging videos and worksheets. Expect to see more Algebra 1 IBLs throughout the year.
Improved Star integration for premium users
Many schools rely on Star Math and Star Reading data to inform student skill levels. While Freckle has pretests to serve a similar function, we did not want to overwhelm students or teachers with redundant diagnostics. If a student has taken multiple Star tests, then the most recent score will be used to determine student levels within Freckle. We still want to make sure that students are practicing at their level, so Freckle will still ignore Star Math and Star Reading data that are older than 90 days.
Star Math data, once integrated, can now place students in all domains they haven’t practiced, allowing a bypass of the Freckle pretests. Star Reading integration works a little differently. The Star score bypasses the Freckle reading pretest and will set the Freckle reading level. This will only happen if the student does not yet have a reading level. The Star score will also be used as a starting point for ELA Skills Practice domains that students have not yet practiced. Word Study levels are not, however, integrated with Star. It’s important to note that Star placements will not erase past student growth data regardless of integration.
Finally, teachers will no longer have to toggle on Star integration for individual classes. If the integration is enabled at the school level, students will automatically be prompted to connect with Star. After creating any assignment in Freckle, there will be a button on the assignment to share that assignment with Google Classroom.
Changes to the Math Levels report
In order to help teachers better differentiate, the Math Levels report now indicates when students are “not ready” or “placed out” of a domain, based on their Star Assessment data or Freckle pretest data.
A student will be “placed out” of a domain if their Star score is above the last skill in that domain or if they mastered the last skill in the Freckle pretest for that domain and the student’s rostered grade level is above the grade range of the domain.
A student will be marked as “not ready” for a domain if their Star score is below the first skill in that domain or if they failed the first skill in the Freckle pretest for that domain and the student’s rostered grade level is below the grade range of the domain.
As always, please let us know if you have any feedback on these new features by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
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