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Announcing a Partnership with StudyLock

We are very eStudyLock App Logoxcited to announce the release of a brand-new version of StudyLock, an educational application that helps parents manage how their children interact with their smart devices for which Help Teaching is the exclusive content provider.

StudyLock is an intelligent educational system from Big Mage Studio, a talented and experienced developer with a great talent for designing engaging apps that kids love, that locks selected apps and games on the children mobile devices and only gives access after they answer a series of educational questions specifically selected for their grade. The questions available through StudyLock are geared for children and teens in grades 3-10.

The questions kids and teens must answer to unlock their devices are all provided by Help Teaching’s content contributors. Our contributors have over 20 years of combined teaching experience and are committed to providing the highest quality of content for use by StudyLock™. It’s the same high-quality content you’ll find as part of Help Teaching’s premium printable worksheets and lessons. Questions are broken into five categories: math, history, science, language arts, and health. All math and language arts questions are aligned to the Common Core State Standards too, ensuring that the content is focused on the knowledge and skills kids need to know. Parents can also create custom questions that are specific to their child needs.

Study Lock Quiz Screenshot

In addition to giving access to exclusive premium content from Help Teaching, StudyLock offers parents the ability to:

– Monitor app and game usage
– Remotely block access to particular apps and games
– Send on-screen messages/reminders
– Track a child’s progress in key subject areas

Through their partnership, StudyLock and Help Teaching provide parents with a comprehensive resource to monitor children and teens’ academic progress and provide them with tools to improve their skills. Parents can choose to have progress reports e-mailed to them and quickly see which standards their kids and teens need the most help with. Once parents determine where their kids need the most help, they can head over to Help Teaching to discover more resources to help them improve their skills.

The StudyLock app is free to download from Google Play or the Amazon app store and is supported by all Android devices – smartphones and tablets – running Android 4.1 or higher.

For more information about StudyLock, visit http://studylockapp.com/. If you would like to support StudyLock and its mission, you can do so via the StudyLock Kickstarter campaign.

Announcing Test Room – Online Assessment Platform

Online Test Administration for Educators and Trainers
Help Teaching now offers Test Room, an online assessment platform designed for teachers, parents, tutors, and trainers. Test Room gives educators the power to administer assessments online. It also provides statistical data to help educators quickly monitor and assess student and class performance. As an educator, you have many reasons to quiz students and now Test Room provides the convenience, tools, and flexibility to do so in a meaningful way.

Creating Student Groups

The My Classes feature lets you organize and assign tests for individual classes or groups of students. Once you create a class, you can assign a test to the entire group at one time. You may add or remove students to classes at any point. In addition, once a class has finished a test, you will have access to statistics on overall test results enabling you to evaluate class performance. A few other options for the class feature include:

  • Splitting up students in the same class into different classes in Test Room, perhaps by level
  • Administering different versions of the test to different groups
  • Creating and administering different tests to groups of students based on their ability levels or to easily adapt tests for special needs students

Scheduling Tests

Whether you want to give a brief quiz to check for understanding or a cumulative course final, Test Room offers numerous features for test scheduling to fit your needs.

Required Settings
Scheduling a test begins with either creating a custom assessment with Test Maker or selecting a pre-made assessment from Help Teaching’s expansive library of printable worksheets. After selecting a test to administer, simply choose your preferred method of inviting students to take the test. Options include:

  • Inviting students or classes by e-mail which automatically sends students a direct link to start the test
  • Sharing a public link with students instead of e-mailing them

Optional Features

In addition to the required settings, you can select a few optional features:

  • Private Note to include any personal reminders or comments that are not shared with your students
  • Test Instructions to share special instructions or reminders with your students when they start the test

Time Settings
Initially, all Test Room assessments offer unlimited testing times and open-ended start and end dates. As a teacher you can:

  • Set a maximum amount of time students have to complete the test by filling-in the Time Allotted field
  • Fill in the Start and End Date & Time fields to have students take or complete a test at a specific time

When you set these time settings your test will only be active during the set time period and can no longer be taken once the time period expires. Be sure to double check all your settings to make sure students can take your test when it’s time for them to start.

Test Administration Options

Depending on the purpose of assessment, you can select different options to change how students interact with the test. Some of these options include:

  • Allowing students to navigate back to previous questions
  • Keeping students from revising previous answers
  • Enabling practice mode so students can see answers and, if desired, take the test multiple times

All of these features are available in the Test Administration section and you’ll find specific boxes and instructions to help you make those choices there . For example, if you want students to be able to navigate back to previous questions to revise their answers, be sure to check the correct box.

Grading Tests

Along with giving students an easy way to take an exam, Test Room offers a few different options for grading, including:

  • Automatic grading of multiple choice and true/false questions
  • Immediate grade displays for students
  • Fill-in-the-blank and open-ended questions you can grade by hand
  • The ability to override any automatic corrections

With the grading feature, you can save a lot of time by letting Test Room do the grading and give students the feedback they want. Even if you choose to manually grade your assessments, you’ll still save time by allowing students to quickly take the test online.

Reviewing Analytics

To help provide you with a meaningful analysis of student mastery and progress, Test Room generates data on individual student performance and overall test performance.

Student Performance
Student performance data helps you see student performance based on the following information:

  • an itemized list of each test that student has been assigned
  • the completion status of the tests
  • the grade for each test
  • the date the test was scheduled

This way you can evaluate trends in individual student progress and test performance.

Overall Test Performance
Test Room also generates an overall statistical report for each test assigned. The test performance report provides:

  • the total number of students who have completed the test
  • the number of questions on the test
  • the average number of correctly answered questions
  • a grade breakdown by number of students
  • percentage of correct answers for each individual question

With this data you can monitor how individual students are performing and help make sure the quizzes and tests you assign are producing the desired outcome.

Announcing a partnership with StudyLock™ App

study-lock-app-icon
We are excited to announce Help Teaching’s partnership with StudyLock™, a parental control app. Help Teaching is an exclusive content provider for this innovative application that “parents love and teens hate”.

Eric Vreeken, the app’s creator, designed the app after having trouble prying his own children away from their devices and getting them to focus on their homework first.

The idea is that kids and tens must answer questions before they can use their devices. Help Teaching’s role is to provide the content for those multiple-choice questions, ensuring questions are available to cover multiple grade-levels and subject areas.

How does StudyLock™ Work?

StudyLock™ locks games, internet, cellphone use, smartphone applications, and texting to other telephone numbers, except for predetermined emergency phone numbers. In order for a child to unlock the device, they must answer questions in subjects such as Math, Science, History, and Literature. Parents control how many questions must be answered before the device can be used normally. Some kids may just need to answer a single question for a quick review, while others may need to answer more to encourage them to focus more on their studies and less on texting and playing with apps. Once the questions have been answered the cellphone or device can be used as normal.

The questions kids and teens must answer to unlock their devices are all provided by Help Teaching’s content contributors. Our contributors have over 20 years of combined teaching experience and are committed to providing the highest quality of content for use by StudyLock™. It’s the same high-quality content you’ll find as part of Help Teaching’s premium printable worksheets and questions. All math and language arts questions are aligned to the Common Core State Standards too, ensuring that the content is focused on the knowledge and skills kids need to know.

Of course, there’s more to StudyLock™ than just answering questions. Parents can choose to have progress reports e-mailed to them and quickly see which standards their kids and teens need the most help with. Once parents determine where their kids need the most help, they can head over to Help Teaching to discover more resources to help them improve their skills.

Test Designer is now Help Teaching

We’re excited to announce that Test Designer is now Help Teaching!

Why We’re Changing our name to HelpTeaching.com

TestDesigner.com launched in 2005 as a test maker tool, with a little over 100 questions across a dozen subject areas. When we first launched, we faced a classic chicken-and-egg problem – the platform needed content to be successful but didn’t yet have users to add that content. Fast forward to 2011 – the site had over 50,000 public questions across more than 300 topics and over 100,000 users worldwide. With all of the questions we had, we thought it only made sense to create a library of free printables. To give back to the community, we added free printables in December 2011. Printables, of course, turned out to be hugely popular with our members. So in the last 18 months, we have added hundreds of new worksheets and activities to our site.

Due to our expanded offerings, the original site name no longer represented all we had to offer and didn’t connect with our primary audience. Test Designer now offers numerous resources for teachers, homeschoolers and educators of all types designed to help them with teaching, hence the new name – Help Teaching.

What’s Next?

Where to begin? With the Common Core State Standards, of course! We are working aggressively to align our existing content to the CCSS and adding new content across the ELA and Math standards. We have an ambitious goal to have all standards covered for the start of the 2013-2014 school year.

And we’re not stopping there! We thought, “Why not use our extensive library of images and add other resources besides worksheets?” As a result, we will be adding study guides, games and lesson plans in the coming months.

We would like to take this opportunity to say thank you. Thank you so, so much for helping us grow by providing your feedback and offering your support over the last 7 years. Test Designer was something special, and, with your continued help and support, Help Teaching will be something even more special. As always, you can find us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest, or just send us an email to support at testdesigner.com

With hugs, love, and gratitude,

Lilia Tovbin

Founder, Tribrio Inc.

Announcing New Premium Worksheets

The Common Core State Standards are one of the current hot topics in education. As schools across the country have begun to adopt the standards, teachers must find new ways to assess the critical and higher order thinking skills they measure. Test Designer’s members can now find ways to assess the Common Core State Standards directly through standards-aligned worksheets on HelpTeaching.com.

Worksheets aligned to the Common Core English standards can already be found on Test Designer. As soon as you open a Common Core aligned worksheet, a new module on the print preview page allows you to instantly see the standards the worksheet is aligned with.

One of the first subject areas of Test Designer to be aligned to the standards is language arts. Many of the worksheets you will find in the reading strategies category have been designed to include the in-depth analysis, reasoning and comparison and contrast skills that the standards promote. Students will also be introduced to longer reading passages and associated questions, similar to what they will find on many standardized exams. For example, eighth grade students can analyze President Roosevelt’s Pearl Harbor Address to the Nation in the Analyzing a Speech worksheet and fifth grade students can analyze characters in popular short stories. Common Core aligned worksheets are also available for grammar instruction. Instead of simply identifying the parts of speech, students can put them to use combining sentences and correcting punctuation. Many of the Common Core Standards for language are already represented through worksheets available on the Test Designer site.

English teachers are not the only ones who can access standards-aligned worksheets. Worksheets are also available for math for grades two through five on topics such as money word problems and for grades six to eight on topics such as the Pythagorean Theorem and Geometric Solids. While the Common Core Standards do not cover general science and social studies skills, teachers can also access premium worksheets in these areas. These premium worksheets, such as one Muscular System Anatomy, feature high-quality images and content.

Throughout the summer, Help Teaching team plans to add worksheets covering nearly all Common Core standards and content areas. However, access to these Common Core aligned worksheets and future worksheets is only available by subscribing to Help Teaching Pro.