Galaxy Math is a one-to-one tutoring approach for at-risk first graders. Paraprofessionals tutor students in 30-minute sessions 3 times a week for 16 weeks. The program has a space theme; for example, students can earn “moon rocks” by completing work and staying on task. The program is scripted, and tutors are expected to follow the scripts without reading them or memorizing them. Tutors receive a 2-day initial workshop and then participate in weekly meetings with project coordinators to review the progress of each child. The content of the lessons focuses on understanding and proficiency with addition and subtraction.
A Nashville study evaluated Galaxy Math in comparison to a control group in which students did not receive any tutoring or formal remediation. Outcomes favored Galaxy Math on all four measures, but two measures were made by the researchers and did not qualify for this review. On qualifying measures, the effect size was +0.24, which qualifies Galaxy Math for the ESSA “Strong” category. Note that a program variation, strategic speeded practice vs. strategic non-speeded practice, found an advantage for strategic speeded practice vs. strategic non-speeded practice speeded practice. The program is disseminated only as the strategic speeded practice, where the relevant effect size is +0.57.
Paraprofessionals or certified teachers
Sites schedule a 1-day tutor training workshop to be conducted on site by the program trainer. Training materials, including program manuals, are shipped to the training site (typically the school or district). Costs for the workshop are $1500, plus trainer’s travel expenses.
The tutor training workshop provides detailed program information, an overview of background research and theory, trainer modeling, and tutor practice. Trainees also are provided materials highlighting program information and implementation requirements and guidelines. Tutors practice entire lessons using program manuals, scripts, and supporting materials. The trainer provides instruction and feedback to tutors on techniques, procedures, and lesson content coverage.