Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School


Discover how EquatIO is giving students the best opportunity for learning in math at Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School, Catoosa County Schools District.

The Catoosa County School District is a public school district in Catoosa County, Georgia, United States, based in Ringgold, Georgia.

When the school district put a specific emphasis on using new digital teaching and learning methods, each student and teacher received a Chromebook. This prompted math teacher, Dan Lyons, to revolutionize how he taught his math classes, taking them from the pen and paper era, into a much more digital and collaborative classroom.

Initially Dan discovered Texthelp product gMath, which later evolved into EquatIO. He says, “I remember the Tuesday of Spring break 2017 when gMath became EquatIO and I was jumping for joy! This was the real turning point for me and my students, finally we could all learn math in a fully digital and inclusive way.”

Outcomes

  • The Catoosa County school district placed a new emphasis on digital teaching and learning methods
  • EquatIO provided a platform to move math and STEM learning into the new digital era
  • Providing a seamless transition when the sudden move to remote learning hit
  • Ease of use for students to work collaboratively and digitally with EquatIO

The background

The Catoosa County School District is a public school district in Catoosa County, Georgia, United States, based in Ringgold, Georgia. It serves the communities of Fort Oglethorpe, Indian Springs, Lakeview, and Ringgold. The district has around 9.8K students enrolled in its ten elementary, three middle and three high schools.

Catoosa County itself is a suburban district in northwestern Georgia, bordering Tennessee. Thanks to Interstate 75 cutting through the middle of the county and the E-SPLOST, an Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, the county is in the advantageous position to invest heavily in education technology and infrastructure.

The challenge

When the school district put a specific emphasis on using new digital teaching and learning methods, each student and teacher received a Chromebook. This prompted math teacher, Dan Lyons, to revolutionize how he taught his math classes, taking them from the pen and paper era, into a much more digital and collaborative classroom.

Initially Dan discovered Texthelp product gMath, which later evolved into EquatIO. He says, “I remember the Tuesday of Spring break 2017 when gMath became EquatIO and I was jumping for joy! This was the real turning point for me and my students, finally we could all learn math in a fully digital and inclusive way.”

The solution

Once Dan was sure EquatIO was the route he needed to go down for his teaching method he submitted an EquatIO decision guide to his senior team, showing them that buying the tool was the only way for his students to do things digitally in math. “Because the district is committed to digital teaching and learning, and to using Google operating systems, we were able to purchase premium access for every student,” Dan comments.

A seamless transition

Fast forward some time to March 13, 2020, everyone went home from school, and stayed home. Dan’s students were in the privileged position to have been learning digitally for at least two years at that point, so the move to remote learning was pretty much seamless for them. And following the shift to a hybrid model at the start of the new school year, Dan’s classes continued to thrive using EquatIO across both remote learning and in the physical classroom. Dan says, “Every student’s work is digital, nothing has changed for them.”

For some of Dan’s colleagues the learning curve to a more digital path for math instruction has been steep, and quick. “The day we found out we were going to be out for an extended period of time, the Math department got together to talk about how they would teach remotely. ‘Oh we know what you’re going to say,’ they all told me. That’s because I’ve been playing a one string guitar for three years now. Every year at our instructional fair I show my colleagues how to use EquatIO, and how it helps. The more people I can get using it, the more I can justify having premium access.”

A lasting impact

Dan reflects on how easy it is to get even his new students up to speed on working collaboratively and digitally with EquatIO in his math classes. “On the first day that students have their Chromebooks, I send students to Equat.io and take them through the features - fractions, exponents, and graphing. I show them the handwriting tool and the voice input, demonstrating all the ways they can do math digitally. Then I show them Google forms, because most of my assessments are in forms. I teach them how to show their working by using the multi-line feature. I do hold their hands at first, as with anything, but their learning curve is quick and it doesn’t take long for them to get it. I got some new students recently, and the kids around them have taught them the EquatIO ropes.”

Makes math both digital and accessible. Type, handwrite, or dictate any expression, with no tricky coding to master.