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Inside a "Flexible Classroom"

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Blended-learning pioneer Rocketship Education now uses "flexible" classrooms in grades 4 and 5 in some of its Bay Area schools. At Mateo Sheedy Elementary in San Jose, Calif., 92 students, 2 teachers, and 1 instructional aide share a single room, divided into different learning stations. During a recent morning, five different types of learning took place simultaneously.
ONLINE LEARNING In the center of the room, 25 students work on laptops, receiving tailored math lessons from a software program while an hourly-rate instructional aide oversees their work. www.thinglink.com
ENGLISH LESSON Teacher Juan Mateos leads 22 students through a lesson on identifying figurative language. The children have been grouped based on ability. www.thinglink.com
INDEPENDENT WORK In the center of the room, an hourly-rate classroom aide also oversees 17 students working independently. Here, Celeste Martinez examines a painting by Pablo Picasso. www.thinglink.com
INTERVENTION Michael Yeung, an "individualized learning specialist" making roughly $15 per hour, uses a scripted curriculum to provide phonics instruction to four students in need of extra help. Mr. Yeung is also responsible for monitoring online learning and independent work.
All photos by Ramin Rahimian for Education Week. The panoramic photo is made up of multiple images.
MATH LESSON Teacher Jason Colon works with 22 advanced students on a lesson about graphing coordinates. Students in the flexible classroom are regrouped according to ability every six weeks or so. www.thinglink.com