Repton School

Kognity Customer story

 

Repton School is a non-selective international private school in Dubai. Repton prides itself on its inclusivity – with a student body spanning 80 nationalities – and its ‘Outstanding’ status and results. Matt Broderick is Head of Biology, Head of House and Head of Year at Repton School, having worked as Head of Science for almost ten years at schools across the Middle East. He is an accomplished author, having 21 titles to his name.

Matt used Kognity for three years at his previous school and was quick to introduce his Repton IBDP Biology class to its intelligent textbooks. He has now inspired the rest of the staffroom to teach with Kognity.

Repton School’s challenges before Kognity

  •      Transient nature of the school – students and their families come and go, as do teachers 
  •       Many students have English as an additional language
  •       Looking for ways to support staff wellbeing 
  •       Keen to boost student confidence
Kognity Teacher Icon

Providing consistency in a changing environment

Kognity encourages independent learning, putting students in control of their learning journey. Its smart contents page allows them to track their own progress, no matter their starting position. This can be particularly important for students who have had a disrupted school experience, either through changing schools or high staff turnover. Matt says:

 

“Kognity gives students the confidence to work at their own pace: to watch the videos and the animations, then have that little ‘eureka moment’ in their own time. It’s quite empowering that it allows them to work things out for themselves. Our students love it because they have high expectations and they like the challenge.”

Breaking down language barriers

Having English as an additional language shouldn’t be a barrier to learning. Kognity provides the tools that students need to succeed, no matter their first language. Matt’s students find Kognity’s glossary invaluable: 

 

“With students where English isn’t their first language, the glossary terms are really helpful because they can click on them and the definition is right there. In a textbook, they would probably glance past words that they don’t understand and wouldn’t ask. It’s so simple but it really helps.”

Supporting staff wellbeing

The pressures on teachers are well documented –parental expectations; an overwhelming amount of content to cover; seemingly endless lessons to plan. This can increase staff turnover in a school and lead to decreased motivation. Matt thinks Kognity has the answers:

 

“I care so much about the wellbeing of my staff. It is a very high-pressured environment here, where the parents will really tell you what they want. But Kognity does half the job for you. Kognity’s assignments automatically mark themselves and assess the quality of the homework. You can save yourself an hour with that alone, and finish work earlier so you can spend that time doing something you enjoy. 

Kognity plans your lessons for you too, in the way the sections are laid out. You have the text, with videos and some exercises, and then you have the questions to go with it. A teacher may spend 45 minutes making a presentation for a similar thing but, in Kognity, it’s all there for you.”

Boosting student confidence

At Repton School, students are always looking for ways to challenge themselves, particularly when it comes to self-study outside of the classroom. With Kognity, students have a huge bank of practice questions available to them to ensure they have everything covered. Matt appreciates the transparency of the platform, which enables him to assess their progress. He even reported that, thanks to Kognity, one of his students has answered three-to-four thousand questions and has decided to become a biologist:

 

“I love the questions feature. No matter what I’ve done in class, I always assess the students using the Kognity questions. I gathered our paper textbooks and counted the number of questions in them – it was an average of 100–120 questions per book, often badly written. Kognity offers the opportunity to do three, four, even five thousand questions. Practice makes perfect, doesn’t it?

I have a Kognity leaderboard at school for the students, to motivate them but also to motivate the teachers to challenge their students more. Two students have been at the top of the leaderboard for the whole year.”

Using data positively

Carefully collected data provides teachers with unrivalled insight into students’ progress. Matt uses his Kognity data to see where students might need more support, but also to give praise to those students working hard.

 

“The most valuable thing I do with Kognity, is I’ll set a 7 question assignment at the beginning of a lesson, based on something they’re about to do, or maybe something they’ve already done as homework, and to me it just shows if they’ve mastered the subject or not. It gives me really rich performance data. I know much sooner that some of my students might need my support, or might need an email home, positive or negative. 

I really like to use the statistics in a positive way as well, as I can see who is reading a lot and doing a lot of studying in their own time. I think sometimes it can go unnoticed but it’s really motivational for them to be recognised for their hard work.”

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of teachers believe Kognity raises student attainment

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