Concept Builders, Version 2 is Ready to Use

Hey teachers! It's HERE! We're releasing Version 2 Concept Builders with our new Task Tracker system. We've been beta-testing it through February and March. While it's still in the Beta Test stage, we think you're going to love it. And you're going to love it even more as we continue to make improvements and refinements over the next weeks and months. With the immediate need for eLearning tools among our teaching and learning communities, Version 2 Concept Builders may be the answer you've been looking for. Join in by getting a FREE teacher account today! 

To get registered, visit our NEW Teacher Registration page.

About Version 2 Concept Builders


About our Version 2 Beta Test Trials

As of this writing (March 19, 2020), we have opened our Version 2 Beta Test program up to the public. This time has come about 3-4 weeks earlier than expected. But who expected a viral pandemic that would close schools restaurants, and work places throughout the world? So with a small degree of hesitancy mixed with a passionate desire to help the Physics learning community in this time of crisis, we are opening our doors with a Come One, Come All attitude. Whoever wants to try Version 2 is welcome to do so. We believe that for many teachers, these will be a life-saver as they navigate the uncharted world of eLearning.



What is Different About a Version 2 Concept Builder?

A Version 2 Concept Builder offers additional functionality that was not present in our original Concept Builders. All Concept Builders track a student's progress on each of the activities using a system of Stars and Trophies. But that progress has never been saved. When a student exits the page, all knowledge of their progress is lost. A Version 2 Concept Builder adds the functionality of saving and retrieving student progress using our NEW Task Tracker system.

The process begins when a teacher registers for a Teacher Account. We then validate that the person who just registered is indeed a teacher. Once we have confirmed that the person is a teacher (which may take a few hours), we enable the account, and send out an email with log-in directions. That's all there is to it; the teacher can now use our Task Tracker system and the full potential of Version 2 Concept Builders.

Once the account is set up, the Teacher can invite their students to join their course using a simple form and Sign Up Code. The teacher can assign Concept Builders to their classes, set due dates, identify which parts of the Concept Builder must be completed, and fill out a form identifying how the Concept Builder will be scored and whether late submissions are allowed and what type of penalty late submissions will be subjected to. Teachers can even include an introductory note to students ... like "Before starting this Concept Builder watch the video titled ... " or "This Concept Builder coordinates with Slides 21-28 of the Unit 8 Slide Deck found on Google Classroom." 

When a student logs into their account, they will see the assignment information set by the teacher. They can click on the assignment to do the Concept Builder and their progress on each level or activity will be saved in their account. If they complete the first part of the Concept Builder at school and attempt to complete other parts at a later time, the system will display the trophy for previously completed parts. 

Teachers will be able to view student progress for each Concept Builder and print or export class results and scores. A Version 2 Concept Builder is a natural extension of what already exists with the added functionality of storing, retrieving, and displaying assignment information and student progress information inside of Teacher and Student accounts. With a Version 2 Concept Builder, there is no longer any need to require students to send screenshots of their Trophy screen ... and no longer any temptation for students to PhotoShop such screens.



I'm a Teacher. How Can I Participate in Version 2 Trials?
 
It's easy. Visit our Teacher Registration page. Register for an account. Then wait while we take some time to manually confirm that you are a teacher. Once we've confirmed this, we will enable your account and send you an email notifying you that your account is set up. The email will contain log-in directions.

The offer is FREE through the end of July. And the benefits could be enormous if you are confronted with the need to provide meaningful learning experiences for your students in a distance learning environment.

Don't let the phrase "Beta Test" scare you away. It works. And it is working better each day. We will continue to provide updates about the progress of our Beta Test program on this web page and on our social media sites:
 



Are There Directions for Version 2 Concept Builders?

As of this writing (March 26, 2020), we have just begun to develop directions.  You can find them here.




What If I Don't Join the Trial? Can I Still Use Them?

As we conduct Version 2 Beta Testing, Concept Builders will operate no differently for those who are not participating in the trial. However, students will undoubtedly observe some messages that they have not noticed before. Teachers may want to be informed so as to answer these questions. 

First, a student will know that they are doing a Version 2 Concept Builder if they see a Version 2 label on the Title Screen just below the title. The absence of a Version 2 label means that the Concept Builder has not yet been optimized for Version 2. As of this writing (3/19/2020), approximately 95% of our Physics Concept Builders and approximately 50% of our Chemistry Concept Builders have been optimized for Version 2.  We will be updating the remainder slowly over time and testing their functionality one-by-one.


How to Know It's a Version 2 Concept Builder



Second, when the Title Screen appears for a Concept Builder,  a notice may be given that informs the student that they are not connected to the database and that their progress results will not be saved. They will be offered an opportunity to Log In or to continue using the Concept Builder as a Guest. If the student's teacher is not participating in the trial, then they should simply use the Concept Builder as a Guest. To use the Concept Builder as a Guest, the student should simply enter their name in the field and tap on the Start button (as they always have done). Using a Concept Builder as a Guest means that the Concept Builder performs as it always has. The student will notice no differences in the functionality of the Concept Builder after leaving the Title Screen.

Appearance of Title Screen When Not Logged In






Will There be a Cost for Version 2 Concept Builders?

Participation in the Beta Test will be free of charge. We will run the Beta through July 31, 2020. We are hoping that many teachers will be able to test out the program during the trial months in order to experience the value and the ease of being able using Concept Builders as assignments and tracking student progress. Such an experience will help teachers evaluate the effectiveness of the program and decide if they wish to subscribe to it during the 2020-21 school year. Requisitions and orders can be placed during the summer months, allowing a teacher to be up and running at the start of the Fall semester of 2020.

Beginning August 1, 2020 the cost of Teacher Accounts will be $50 per teacher per year for up to 50 Students. There will be an additional charge of $1 per Student beyond 50 Students. We believe this is an affordable program for those schools that are typical users of The Physics Classroom and of our Concept Builders. And given the low cost and the obvious savings of time for busy teachers who use the Concept Builders as auto-graded homework assignments, the benefits are likely worth the cost. Payments can be made by teachers or by schools using Purchase Orders or through direct payment using a credit card or a PayPal account. Information about Subscriptions and payments will be available later in the Spring of 2020. 



If I Don't Opt In, Can I Still Use the Concept Builders?

Yes!! Version 2 is a premium offering. Teachers who do not register for an account will still be able to use the Version 2 Concept Builders in the same manner that they always have. They will just miss out on the functionality of being able to keep track of student progress on assigned Concept Builders. A Version 2 Concept Builder can be completed as a logged-in student of a subscribed teacher or as a Guest. Using a Concept Builder as a Guest will be the same experience as it has always been - with Stars and Trophies and Dataways ... and lots of learning along the way. The Physics Classroom would never get in the way of that.



 


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