English Enrichment Enabled by Innovative Platform Features
Piqosity Virtual Tutor
Students input their goal score with timeline, and Patrick the Piqosity Virtual Tutor (PVT) guides them step-by-step through personalized lessons, practice, and review.
ELA Reading Passages
Piqosity’s grade-specific English courses heavily emphasize improving reading skills through reading mastery in a wide range of domains including short stories, informational texts, novels, creative non-fiction, and inquiry topics.
In addition to shorter works, every course includes entire units devoted to walking students through a full-length novel such as Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles in ELA 8 or F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby in ELA 11 and presents questions on every chapter of these iconic texts.
At launch, each ELA course features between 110 and 150 reading passages, 1200+ reading comprehension questions, and requires about 40 hours to work through.
Adaptive & Gamified Practice
Piqosity can create individualized practice sets based off a student’s weakest areas. A gamified mode provides instant feedback, leaderboard points, plus badges and sounds.
Concept Review Lessons
Brush up on reading and writing concepts with our tutorials that cover everything from comma usage to structuring an essay. Piqosity dynamically recommends lessons based off of a student’s demonstrated weaknesses.
Strengths & Weaknesses Analysis
Piqosity continuously updates your estimated test day score after every full-length test and practice set. It also analyzes all practice to provide details on strengths and weaknesses, improvements, and pacing.
Every premium question contains at least 1 explanation. Students may request additional explanations from all educator in our network.
Printable Practice Test PDFs
Both ELA unit tests and personalized practice sets can be downloaded as a PDF for printing.
Want to time your English practice? The default time is 90 seconds per question; however, the countdown timer can be set to time-and-a-half, and double time according to your preferences.
Innovative Learning Tools
Piqosity’s student interface includes helpful tools like answer choice strike-throughs, question flagging, and a whiteboard on which to do scratch work.
Our global team of software engineers, curriculum editors, and educators is continuously deploying features and updating materials. We generally make behind-the-scenes code updates every two weeks.
Piqosity’s Affordable Pricing For Reading and Writing Enrichment
ELA Course Plans
The chart above is for users who sign up directly with Piqosity beginning September 6, 2021.
- No credit card is required to register for the free Community Plan.
- All plans include unlimited access for 365 days.
- Lower-tier plans can be upgraded after initial purchase; however, coupons are not applicable to upgrades, and the validity period will not be extended beyond the original purchase date.
Included Services for Individual Users
The Advanced Package with bundled ISEE Prep includes a one-time parent-tutor consultation and a one-to-one student tutorial provided by a qualified educator. These services will help to ensure that parents and students get off to a great start and know how to correctly use Piqosity’s platform.
These consultation and tutorial services are provided by third-party educators not employed by Piqosity.
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The purpose of the Parent-Tutor Consultation is for parents to get a better understanding of the steps required for their child to succeed at ISEE test prep and testing. These consultations are between a qualified tutor or manager and the student’s parent or guardian.
- Students are not generally part of this meeting
- Consultations last approximately 20 minutes
- Consultations are typically virtual but can take place in-person when possible
Topics to be covered in the consultation include:
- Answering a parent’s general questions about the selected course
- Showing quick tips on how to best use Piqosity
- Providing recommendations for next-steps
The purpose of the Private Tutorial is for students to review their completed Mini Diagnostic test with an experienced tutor and receive quick tips and strategies.
- Tutoring sessions are help one-to-one with the student
- Session last a maximum of 1 hour
- Sessions are typically virtual but can take place in-person when possible
Topics to be covered in the 1-hour tutoring session include
- Reviewing a student’s Piqosity mini-diagnostic test
- Showing quick tips on how to best use Piqosity
- Providing recommendations for next steps
Group Pricing for Educators
Discounted, per-student pricing is available to any educator including schools, tutoring companies, teachers, or tutors. Each student license is charged individually depending on the number of active licenses in the educator’s account.
Only one type of plan is available for group discounts–the Group Plan. The Group Plan includes access to all material including practice tests but no additional services or bundled courses.
No application is required; to qualify for group pricing, simply register as an educator or organization, and the discounts will be automatically applied.
The Piqosity Advantage
How to Use Piqosity’s ELA Courses
Our proven skills building methodology for the last 18+ years.
Aligned to Common Core and Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills
Piqosity’s grade-specific English Language Arts courses features more than 110 reading passages followed by reading comprehension questions in the main idea, supporting idea, vocabulary-in-context, author intent, organization & logic, tone, style, and figurative language. For example, our ELA-8 passages are divided into 5 genre-specific units:
- Unit 1 – Short Stories (6 stories at launch)
- Unit 2 – Informational Texts (18 texts)
- Unit 3 – The Hound of the Baskervilles (15 chapters)
- Unit 4 – Creative Nonfiction (14 works)
- Unit 5 – Inquiry Topics (4 discussion pieces)
The first topic of our ELA courses generally focuses on reading; below is an ELA-8 example:
- Elements of Literature
- Author’s Purpose
- Tone & Mood
- Figurative Language
- Figures of Speech
- Rhetorical Devices
The first topic of our ELA courses generally focuses on writing; below is an ELA-8 example:
- Writing Process
- Transition Words & Phrases
- Argumentative Writing
- Argumentative Writing – Elements & Structure
- Evidence & Analysis
- Informative Writing
- Informative Writing – Elements & Structure
- Research Writing
- Citing Evidence
- Narrative Writing
The first topic of our ELA courses generally focuses on language; below is an ELA-8 example:
- Active & Passive Voice
- Word Parts
- Verb Types
- Verb Tenses
- Subject-Verb Agreement
- Parts of Speech
- Clauses & Phrases
The first topic of our ELA courses generally focuses on speaking and listening; below is an ELA-8 example:
- Discussion Skills
- Listening Skills
- Presentation Skills
Bundle your English course with test prep for the ISEE for unrivaled amounts of practice for the private school admissions test.
Frequently Asked Questions
We designed Piqosity’s English Language Arts (ELA) courses to be used in-school as part of the core curriculum or after-school for enrichment. Compared to a classroom or learning center environment, Piqosity essentially offers multiple books in a more personalized, digital format:
- Writing Handbook
- Reading Manual
- Anthology of Reading Passages
- Classic Novels
Piqosity’s ELA courses contain more than 40 hours of material for the average student. During a typical 1-hour study sessions, most students will read 2-3 reading passages from the Anthology or 1 chapter from a novel and work the accompany questions.
Reference our Quick Start guide for more tips and step-by-step directions
Our content is aligned to both Common Core and Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). Where applicable, we and our partners write content in accordance with our experience and the specifications set forth by the test makers (i.e. ACT, College Board, and ERB).
The dashboard for each course puts your student’s progress front and center, with easy-to-read “donuts” displaying their current score (out of 100) across the course as well as within each unit or topic that the course covers. For a more granular look at your student’s accuracy, refer to the Course Outline on the dashboard or visit the Lessons page; these tools display your student’s accuracy when it comes to individual concepts. If your student completed one of Piqosity’s diagnostic assessments upon getting started with the course, you can also compare their diagnostic scores with their current performance to get a sense of how they are progressing.
Piqosity’s online classes are suitable for many different types of self-directed learners. Whether you’re a student looking for additional \ enrichment and test prep outside of the classes or are simply looking for a little remediation, Piqosity’s courses provide you with the tools and resources you need to meet your goals.
However, online learning is not for everyone. Students who struggle to focus on the computer may find that classroom learning is better suited to their needs.
As always, it’s free to sign up with Piqosity’s Community Plan, which provides you with limited access to premium content. The paid plan unlocks all of Piqosity’s key innovative platform features, including:
- Instructional lessons with multiple variations including videos
- Adaptive practice including the option for gamification
- Student analytics and strengths and weakness diagnostics
- Answer explanations from both the original author and third-party educators
- Printable PDF practice tests and question sets
- Timers with settings for time and a half and double time
- Online test taking tools like whiteboard, question scratch throughs, and flagging
Register now to get started!
Piqosity does not provide tutorial services. However, we do partner with independent, third-party educators across the world. Some of our course packages include a consultation or tutorial session with these tutors and teachers.
Yes! We built Piqosity not only to be user friendly for parents and students at home but also for the advanced needs of tutors and teachers. Key features for educators include:
- Student management including the ability to see everything the student sees
- Automatic scoring and analysis of all student work
- Assignments with due dates
- Custom Branding (tutoring companies and schools)
The biggest features for educators are still yet to come. Beginning this fall we will open up our platform to enable any qualified educator to upload their own instructional content to Piqosity. This means that educators will be able to create their own lessons and questions. They will be able to share this content with all users or just with their own students.We are actively looking for educators and publishers to contribute to our platform. Please contact us for more information.
Our content is partly written in-house and partly by third party publishers including tutors and teachers. Our in-house team has more than 15 years of experience helping thousands of students achieve their potential at our home base in Houston and around the world.
Our content is aligned to both Common Core and Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). We and our partners also write content in accordance with our experience and the specifications set forth by the test makers (i.e. ACT, College Board, and ERB).
All courses are available for a full 365 days after the date of purchase.
Piqosity is not an accredited institution and does not offer course credit. We do not currently offer certificates of completion at this time, but are working towards doing so in the near future.
Yes! Every practice set on Piqosity, including adaptive questions and full-length tests, can be downloaded as a PDF file for easy printing.
Piqosity works hard to make our platform as straightforward and easy-to-navigate as possible. If you are experiencing issues, please visit our support center for immediate answers to most questions, including how-to guides for students and educators, as well as a list of known technical issues. You can also contact us via support ticket any time or call us at +1 713-234-6098 within business hours.
Currently, all of our Math and ELA courses are estimated to take around 40 hours to complete. School is in session for roughly 35 weeks out of the year; assuming a student works roughly 1 hour per week, your Piqosity math course will take the average student a full academic year to complete. Students using Piqosity to remediate or prepare for a standardized test such as the ISEE Lower Level, will likely have to compress this timeline.
Yes! Piqosity’s courses are designed to meet your student where they are, and they can be used for both enrichment and remediation. Your child can use Piqosity’s lessons and practice materials to review and reinforce the concepts they are struggling with in class. If they aren’t sure where to start, they can take a diagnostic test to help them understand where their weaknesses lie, or they can use the Piqosity Virtual Tutor to progress through the Course Outline from start to finish.
Children entering the 8th grade are typically around 13 or 14 years old, and our course is ideal for students at that age. However, Piqosity’s courses can be used in a variety of ways. If you have a younger child looking for a challenge, an 11 or 12-year-old could take our course of enrichment purposes. Meanwhile, an older 14-year-old or a 15-year-old who needs to review previously learned concepts could use our course for remediation purposes.
You can learn more about how to effectively use our ELA courses for a variety of scenarios in our helpful user guide.
At this point, the world of literature has really opened up for your child. Depending on their skill level, your 8th grader may be comfortable reading everything from more advanced books in the “middle grades” section, to Young Adult novels, to certain classics (Frankenstein, The Count of Monte Cristo, the Lord of the Ring trilogy, etc.). There are endless numbers of book lists online, but for parents, the important thing to keep in mind is to let their children pursue the type of literature that most engages and intrigues them; that’s the best way to encourage a life-long love of reading.
Parents of 8th graders may struggle to know exactly how to help their child improve their ELA skills. We are frequently asked questions such as “How do I improve my 8th grader’s reading and writing skills?” or “How do I improve my 8th grader’s vocabulary?”
Now that your child is older, it is best to encourage the development of your child’s ELA skills via more independent means. For example, if your child likes to write, encourage them to keep a diary (with a promise that you won’t read it) or pursue their own writing projects. To develop their critical thinking skills, try to maintain an open dialogue about your teens opinions regarding what their reading, watching, or seeing in the news. Check in with your child to see if they need help maintaining a healthy homework schedule. And finally, continue to maintain a culture of reading within your home; take visits to the library or bookstore and encourage reading together as a family activity.
If you desire more structured ELA practice, consider using Piqosity’s 8th grade ELA course.
ELA teachers expect 8th graders to be able to perform a variety of more advanced tasks related to reading, writing, grammar, and speaking. Among other things, your 8th grader should be able to:
- Read full-length texts, including complex novels and nonfiction texts.
- Efficiently find main ideas, summarize a text, synthesize information from more than one source, and compare and contrast more than one text.
- Be able to identify and discuss tone, mood, point of view, symbolism, figurative language, and other narrative elements.
- Maintain consistent subject-verb agreement and use complex punctuation correctly, including quotation marks, commas, ellipses, and dashes.
- Use both context and Greek and Latin roots to identify unfamiliar words.
- Research, draft, write, edit, and provide sources for a variety of writing projects, including narratives, essays, presentations and reports, poems, cover letters, emails. and more.
- Show proficiency in typing and using online collaborative software, including the Microsoft and Google suite of tools.
Children entering the 5th grade are typically around 10 or 11 years old, and our course is ideal for students at that age. However, Piqosity’s courses can be used in a variety of ways. If you have a younger child looking for a challenge, an 8 or 9-year-old could take our course of enrichment purposes. Meanwhile, an older 11-year old or a 12-year-old who needs to review previously learned concepts could use our ELA course for remediation purposes.
You can learn more about how to effectively use our ELA courses for a variety of scenarios in our helpful user guide.
The answer to this question is highly dependent on your child’s reading level, habits, and interests. In general, your child should be comfortable reading a variety of text types, including more complex chapter books. However, we strongly recommend encouraging your child to pursue their own reading subject material. Visit your local library or bookstore and let them pick out age-appropriate books in the “middle grades” section. Don’t forget that your child may also be interested in graphic novels and poetry.
Parents of 5th graders may struggle to know exactly how to help their child improve their ELA skills. We are frequently asked questions such as “How do I improve my 5th grader’s reading and writing skills?” or “How do I improve my 5th grader’s vocabulary?”
One of the best things you can do for your 5th grader’s reading, writing, and vocabulary skills is to encourage them to read outside of the classroom. To do this, we recommend helping them to find books related to their interests and involving your child in your local literary community (think bookstores, libraries, book clubs, and theatres). Try to establish a culture of reading within your home by reading together.
If you desire more structured ELA practice, consider using Piqosity’s 5th grade ELA course.
ELA teachers expect 5th graders to be able to perform a variety of tasks related to reading, writing, grammar, and speaking. Among other things, your 5th grader should be able to:
- Read and understand a variety of text types, including longer chapter books and non-fiction materials.
- Find main ideas, summarize a text, synthesize information from more than one source, and compare and contrast more than one text.
- Write basic structured paragraphs and sentences for a variety of purposes, including simple reports, persuasive essays, and narratives, etc.
- Use basic punctuation and capitalization correctly.
- Understand and be able to identify a variety of grammar elements, including synonyms, antonyms, and conjunctions, as well as use different verb tenses correctly.
- Use context clues to identify unfamiliar words.
- Research information using the internet and books.
Piqosity means to pique curiosity. We are a Houston-based education technology startup on a mission to rethink education. One product launch at a time, we are on a journey to democratize education publishing, personalize student learning, and empower future generations to tackle the greatest challenges. Our team has more than 18 years of tutoring and test prep experience since we first helped our first student out of a Rice University dorm room in 2003. Click here to learn more about our company.
No, as an education-technology company, Piqosity does not directly provide tutorial services. However, we do partner with independent, third-party educators across the world. Some of our course packages include a consultation or tutorial session with these tutors and teachers.
If you upgrade from the free Community plan, your credit card will only be charged the one time with no recurring fees. All paid plans are currently valid for 365 days from the date of activation. No credit card is required to initially register for Piqosity’s free Community plan.
Yes! All of our courses include a free “Community” plan with limited access to premium content like mini diagnostic tests. No credit card is required to register. If you decide that you want access to more premium content, simply upgrade your plan. Upgraded course plans are single-pay, non-recurring, and provide access for 365-days from the date of purchase.
Our content is partly written in-house and partly by third party publishers including tutors and teachers. Our in-house team has more than 15 years of experience helping thousands of students achieve their potential in Houston (where we’re based) and around the world.
We and our partners write content in accordance with our experience and the specifications set forth by the test makers (i.e. ACT, College Board, and ERB). To avoid mismanaging expectations, our material is meant to be challenging while still matching the tested topics and question types.
Every practice set on Piqosity, including adaptive questions and full-length mock tests, can be downloaded as a PDF file for easy printing.
Yes! We are actively looking for educators and publishers to contribute to our platform. Please contact us for more information.