Challenging Advanced Level Students

Question: My student seems advanced for his age. He’s 11 and can complete most of the homework we do with only a little prompting. I’m looking for a way to challenge him in our sessions. Any ideas?

There are many online resources you can use to challenge your student if they seem too advanced for their grade level. Recently I have been using Khan Academy to differentiate instruction for my students who are either advanced or below grade level. If you set up an account, you can actually add on your student (or as many as 30 students if needed) and assign them lessons to work on.

You can also monitor their progress as well and see exactly what skills they need help with. Once you have them start completing several lessons on Khan Academy, then you can see what your student has mastered or what your student needs extra support with. The best part about Khan Academy is that all the videos, lessons, and activities are completely free!

The most important thing to remember with advanced students is to keep them continuously challenged! If they feel as if they content they are learning is too easy, look up the beginning of year standards for the following grade level and teach them the content. They’ll be excited to learn something new and expand their learning!

Other great resources for reading and math that are standards based is IXL. Although IXL is not a free website, you can choose the subject they want to learn (Math or Language Arts) and choose the topic. Make sure you click carefully about which topic to learn because IXL only gives out a few free problems per day.


Make Your Own Comic!

After reading the hilarious comics in the website Bo’s Cafe Life by Wayne E., I was remembered how much I loved reading Batman comics in high school. I even designed comics for UC Irvine’s newspaper. And middle school student definitely love comics (especially Marvel heroes).

WHY? Emphasizes not only writing and artistic ability, but the student is required to design their own story and develop the characters

HOW? Many websites helps students design their own comics The 8blog recommends sites such as PixtonLego Comic Builder, and Make Believe Comix. Find out 8blog’s other recommendations for amazing comic book websites.

Here is an example of a comic I made on Make Believe Comix:


If your classroom does not have access to a computer, then just get a large piece of white paper and cut it into long white strips. The size depends on how many boxes you want to add (Ex: 2-4 squares). The focus isn’t the paper itself but the effort students place into designing and creating their comic.