Whenever the subject of testing comes up in a discussion around education, the participants usually end up clearly on one side of the fence- they are either for it or against it. Often times, those same discussions can get heated and there isn’t a lot of negotiating of opinions. Fortunately, when you insert one more piece to the equation, digital technology, more and more opportunities are popping up for a bridge to be built that can connect the two sides of the testing argument.

Nutmeg Education is one of those tools. Jon Modica and Teddy Hills, former teachers, know first hand how hard it is to accomplish every expectation held for teachers and still have time to build relationships with students as well as physically and mentally be there for them throughout the day. Therefore, they have been working to build a platform that allows teachers to personalize learning for students in real time.

“Nutmeg is an assessment platform that helps teachers make better tests/quizzes.  We help teachers align these assessments to Common Core Standards and give them real time data and insights into students learning.” That alone is not an unique concept. But Nutmeg takes it one step further by by tapping into OER (open educational resources) and connects students to free tutorials and videos based on their own learning needs.

Inside Nutmeg, teachers can create their own quizzes and tests from scratch or tap into the bank of questions stored inside the platform- a shared database of questions created by other teachers using Nutmeg. Students can take their assessment on any device, tablet or computer or, if students do not have full access to technology, teachers can print them out.

According to the New Media Consortium’s Horizon Report for K-12, learning analytics is an emerging technology trend in education that looks to have a widespread adoption in schools in the next two to three years.

“Learning analytics is an emergent field of research that aspires to use data analysis to inform decisions made on every tier of the educational system. Whereas analysts in business use consumer-related data to target potential customers and thus personalize advertising, learning analytics hopes to leverage student-related data to build better pedagogies… For educators and researchers, learning analytics will provide crucial insights about student engagement both inside and outside of class. Students will also benefit from the deliverables of learning analytics through the development of mobile software and online platforms that use student-specific data to tailor support systems for their learning needs.”

The Nutmeg Education team agrees with this prediction- that is why they are kicking off their funding campaign  -in order to grow so that they can help the education community reach the goals described in the NMC Horizon report. All contributions will go directly to expanding the platform to more grades and subjects to help as many teachers as possible (High School Math, Science, & English Language Arts).

By using the assessments made in Nutmeg, teachers receive the immediate data on each student’s results. Teachers and students don’t have to wait until class has ended. Assessments no longer need to be collected, graded at a later time and then returned to the students a few days following, when whatever the subject of the test or quiz is no longer at the forefront of the students minds. Instead, teachers can see the student results in real time and provide each student the support they need immediately, during class. Every student finishes class, supported and equipped with the tools they personally need to continue moving forward in their learning.

 

 

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