Sophia.org to be used in high school

Jackie Scherer

The introduction of laptops at the beginning of the school year paved the way for the development of new technologies used to benefit students and teachers alike. This year, a new website called Sophia (sophia.org) is available for students to use in order to get help in subjects such as math, English, history, or even art.

Sophia was initially created to help students understand the material they learn in school. “Sophia is a social learning network…that offers a variety of media such as PowerPoints, explanations, practice problems, and some videos” said Mr. Dan Bowler, math teacher and regular Sophia user.

The website allows users to create and share “packets” of information regarding a certain topic. “Anyone can create packets once you establish an account. The packets you create [are] rated [by other users],” said Mr. Bowler.

In order to promote the site, Sophia asked BSM students to add information. “The website was looking for people to start creating packets…we [at BSM] helped in creating the initial packets for the site,” said Mr. Bowler.

BSM’s junior high recently tested the site by holding a contest to see who could operate the site the best. “Algebra students created packets, and the people at Sophia rated them based on three things: academic soundness, learning value, and creativity,” said Mr. Bowler.

When the contest is extended to the high school, the rules will be the same as the junior high: the packets must have accurate information, include some learning value, and be intriguing to users. “The deadline for the high school isn’t established yet…but [Sophia is] already used in math classes. For example, my calculus students can check their notes on the site,” said Mr. Bowler.

Sophia went public on March 7, and teachers like Mr. Bowler hope that as it becomes available to public audiences, they will learn how to use it. “We wanted to do this because we now have kids using laptops…[we want] Sophia to be available for students to find and create help,” said Mr. Bowler.