Keeping in School Shape (KiSS): The design and evolution of a program that encourages students to revisit math skills over school breaks
Abstract: Just like physical skills, cognitive skills grow rusty over time unless they are regularly used and practiced. As a result, academic breaks can have harmful consequences on student learning and success. The Keeping in School Shape (KiSS) program is an engaging, innovative and cost-effective intervention that uses existing technology to help students maintain proficiency over breaks from school, while also promoting a growth mindset. Theoretically, the KiSS Program draws on the well-documented benefits of retrieval practice and motivates regular rehearsal of learned material by sending students a multiple-choice mathematics question daily in an accessible and visible manner via text message or email. Growth mindset is promoted through features that encourage students to challenge themselves and that frame mistakes as learning opportunities. This paper takes the reader on a tour of the KiSS Program as it has evolved and expanded in size and scope over several iterations at a major university.