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Powerful Classroom Tools

by Andi Atchison on March 1, 2018

Istation’s Red Cape Moment Contest wrapped up last fall with many customers excited to share their Istation stories. Teresa Martinez, the math and science teacher at Handley Elementary School in Garland, Texas, received an honorable mention for her submission. What stood out to the judges was her creative use of Istation resources.

Read her responses below, which have been lightly edited.

Tell us how Istation data has improved a classroom’s or student’s performance.

The Istation reports are a powerful tool to share with parents in meetings. The Summary Report is a great snapshot to show student progress throughout the year. Parents have often asked, “Can my child log in to Istation for practice?” Right then and there, I know by the end of the year, their child is well on their way to reaching a higher learning.

The amazing part is Istation monitors the student’s level of achievement. Each concept of learning has a multitude of highly engaging activities for the student to delve into. I have heard students so involved in the online learning skill that they shout out in enjoyment, laugh, or giggle from the animation.

How do you motivate students to use Istation?

Students will chart their Istation monthly progress by filling in a bar chart. If they reach their goal, a reward is received. If they log on at home over the weekend, they are recognized on Monday with a small token.

We reward skills mastered throughout the year with an Istation certificate. Students are given a choice to log on to complete an Istation assignment assigned to them. They can create and write their story response on Istation from the lesson being taught.

How do you use Istation resources?

We use Istation resources in several ways:

  • Paired reading is encouraged with the wonderful downloadable leveled books.
  • Small-group instruction materials are used at the round table, and the 2nd graders love the enriched pictures offered by Istation.
  • Teacher planning for intervention is simple. Istation has the objective, skill, resource, and even vocabulary outlined in easy, formattable language.
  • Students engage in Istation group activities scaffolded from a previous lesson taught in the classroom.
  • Istation information charts are posted for students in the classroom.
  • Istation picture cards are stored in journals for students to refer back to.
  • Students enjoy drawing the Istation characters on their folders.
  • Readers’ theatre scripts provided by Istation are a hit with the students.

I can’t say enough about the program — only that students get excited when logged in. So thank you for the creation of this amazing educational program.


Thank you, Ms. Martinez, for your thoughtful responses and for being a valued member of the Red Cape Nation.


Topics: Teacher to Teacher, Classroom Tips

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