Need an easy fundraiser? Run an IXL Math-a-Thon!

A step-by-step guide

Are you a teacher who wants to generate some more classroom funds? Or an administrator who wants to find a meaningful fundraising idea? As educators, you probably don’t have a lot of extra time on your hands, but we’ve come up with something that’s fun and doesn’t require much planning or organizing: a Math-a-Thon!

Running a Math-a-Thon using IXL is an easy way to raise money for your classroom or school–and, it gets students to practice their skills for a good cause! 

Here’s a quick overview of how it works: Community members will pledge a certain amount of money for each skill that their sponsored student reaches proficiency in (a SmartScore of 80).  Students will keep track of pledges on their Pledge Form and collect donations at the end of the contest. The more math the students do, the more money you will raise!

  1. Customize and distribute sponsorship forms

  • Use this template to customize a Math-a-Thon sponsorship form for your classroom/school.  
  • Distribute a sponsorship form to each student.
  • Have each student speak with family, friends, and community members about what their classroom/school is raising money for. Donors can pledge a certain amount of money for each IXL skill the student reaches proficiency in. (A suggested amount could be $1 per skill, or something more or less depending on how long the Math-a-Thon will run.)
  • Encourage students to get as many donors as they can!
  1. Students practice on IXL and aim for proficiency

  • For however long your Math-a-Thon will run, your students will work to reach a SmartScore of at least 80 on as many IXL skills as possible. You can encourage them to use skills from their Recommendations Wall to find relevant skills to work on during and after school. 
  • To motivate students, post a countdown somewhere visible in your classroom/school!
  1. Students calculate their totals

  • At the end of the Math-a-Thon, have students sign in to their IXL accounts and view their Progress and Improvement report (under the IXL Analytics tab).
  • Once there, have them adjust the date range at the top of the page to match the dates of the Math-a-Thon. Then, each student will count the number of skills in which they achieved a SmartScore of 80 or above
  • On their sponsorship form, students will multiply each pledge by the number of skills they reached proficiency in, to calculate how much each donor has pledged in total.
  1. Students communicate their success to donors

  • Have students write letters to their donors that include the following information:
    • Gratitude for the donor’s pledge  
    • A sentence or paragraph about their experience during the Math-A-Thon
    • An announcement about the number of skills the student achieved proficiency in, and the total amount of the donor’s pledge.
    • Students deliver the letters to donors and collect their donations.
  • Optional: Create a running addition problem in the classroom! Whenever a new donation comes in, students can do the work to add it to the total amount collected.

Other things to consider:

  • Invite a corporate sponsor or local businesses to sponsor an entire class/school.
  • Adjust the practice goals for students as you see fit (e.g. a SmartScore goal of 70 or 90, instead of proficiency). 
  • If you like, set additional parameters for practice, such as only allowing practice in skills within one grade level above or below each student’s current grade level.
  • Teachers or parents can provide support to students in counting up their totals.
  • For younger students, consider creating a form letter to donors that students can sign.
  • You can also run this fundraiser with IXL skills in other subjects instead of or in addition to math! Simply rename the contest to “Skill Showdown” or something else that’s not subject-specific.

If you run a successful IXL Math-a-Thon at your school, let us know by tweeting @IXLLearning or posting on our Facebook page!