When it feels as if the program cannot hear a student read, it is best to note the common symptoms (what we can observe), possible problems causing the symptoms (there are often several), and then to take recommended actions.

Rest assured that very rarely is Amira unable to handle student accents or typical classroom background noise.

Symptoms

  • The cursor stalling or moving slowly (Students pausing or repeating words)

  • Intervening on words that are clearly pronounced correctly (Students complaining, "I said that!")

  • Not intervening frequently enough

  • Observing a lot of background noise

  • Amira asking to repeat phrases frequently

Problems

Actions

Network issue (slow latency or network speed, content filters blocking)

Make sure content filters requirements have been met

Run a speed test (min speed for a classroom is 10 download, 10 upload) https://www.speedtest.net

Device issue (browser / device microphone or headset)

Use a compatible device (no tablets or phones)

Always enable the mic on your browser

Clear the cookies & cache

Test your mic using https://mic-test.com/

Configure student headsets

Behavioral issue (student pausing and waiting for cursor to advance which runs up the timer, student reading too quietly, student positioned so they are reading the same story simultaneously, students hitting the mute button on their headset)

Use our test accounts and Intro Slide Deck to model reading fluently as to “read ahead of the cursor”

Model appropriate volume (“loud, proud voice”)

Configure your classroom space so that students are seated side by side instead of directly behind one another

Stagger start times when assessing & begin in small group setting. Test softer or less confident readers a small group setting.

Model appropriate headset use ("hands off the mic & mute button").

Training issue (program operating as expected)

Use the Benchmark and Tracking reports to listen to and rescore all students’ assessments as they come in; look for yellow flagging in assessment.

Listen for long pauses caused by interruptions or other factors impacting the student's ability to do their best. These will drive down WCPM scores. Reassess if more than 10 seconds.

Take our Amira University courses to learn how Practice and Assessment scoring work

Audio disruption (major background noise, interference from Zoom)

Refrain from using simultaneously with Zoom or other virtual learning platform.

Use our virtual learning protocol.

If you have tried the solutions above and are still stuck, please chat with us when the issue is happening and request a live troubleshooting session.

You may also email support@amiralearning.com with an example (provide district, school, class/teacher name, student name, device, browser, and date of activity).


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