Frequently-Asked Questions

Technical Questions

Will the program run from my server at school?

Yes. Work with your technology specialist to place the program FOLDER on your school server.

Why doesn't my audio work consistently?

The problem is likely with your hardware or operating system settings. Ask your technology specialist for assistance.

If I don't like the way the print-outs look, can I change them?

No. The tools are designed to print full page on your default printer.

Can I put the programs on a CD or a memory stick and distribute them within the school?

No. We can't guarantee all the files will get copied to other devices when you do it. There are two easy ways to get the programs placed onto multiple computers. One way is to download the program from our web site directly onto each computer. The second way is to purchase a memory wristband from us that contains the programs and use the memory wristband to copy the program onto multiple computers. Information for ordering the wristband is available on this web site.

Where can I find information on the StrategyTools program for older students?

Go to for resources and to download the program.

Records Storage Questions

Where should student records be saved?

Records can be saved in many places. At school, one place is save their records on the school server. Records can also be saved on the individual computers in classrooms where students make tools. For the most flexibility, provide memory sticks and have students save their records on the memory sticks. This way, students can make and use tools outside of school and gain the most benefit from tool use.

When my student uses the program, the records can't be found. What is wrong?

There are three things to check.

  1. Make sure the student has entered his/her name exactly the same way each time the program is used. If not, there will be multiple record folders, one for each name.
  2. Determine the location for the KidRecords folder and make sure the program can access that location. This could be the computer, the school's server, or a memory stick.
  3. Make sure the student is using the same computer where the work was previously saved if the student elected to save on the computer.

I want to look at my students' records. How can I do this?

All records are saved in a folder called "KidRecords." You need to locate this folder on your computer or server. In this folder you will see a folder containing records for each student using the programs that saved their records in that location.

Are the records confidential? Can students get into each other's files?

No, the records are not confidential. Yes, it would be easy for one student to enter another student's name and get into his/her files. You need to be prudent in storage of records. If the records are saved on the school's server, that location might be protected by passwords. See your school's technology specialists for that information. If the records are saved on the computer where used, it is best to save records where they are not visible on the desktop. If the records are saved on a memory stick, access to the records is more limited because the memory stick travels with the student. If a particularly tool is being used to solve a personal problem, such as drug use, then the student should be advised not to enter confidential information into the tool.

Best Practices for Tool Use

How are these tools different from paper/pencil use of forms?

These tools are interactive and more engaging than paper/pencil forms. These interactive tools work because they involve the student in planning, revising, and evaluating. These evidence-based practices are known to be successful in cognitive-behavioral change. As students create each tool, they mentally rehearse their plan and make a commitment to their plan, and this process is repeated again and again as they continue to use the tool. Cognitive change takes place as students revise and rehearse what they will think and do. Their active commitment supports behavioral change.

It is hard for me to access a printer. Is it OK to print off a supply of the same tool for repeated use?

Although this is a challenge to you, part of the success of the tool approach is the daily planning, rehearsal, and commitment the student makes when preparing the tool for use. Students are not actively involved or engaged in mental rehearsal when they simply use a printed form over and over again. This is not the best way to use tools.

If my student uses the same tool repeatedly, is it OK to make a quantity and hand out a new copy of the form each day?

A better use of the tool approach is to involve the student in evaluating the success of the tool, revising the entries, and preparing a new form each time it is used. This practice increases the students' mental rehearsal and commitment to the tool plan.

If my student has a small change to make in a tool, why does the tool need to be completely re-made? Why can't I re-use an old tool?
You can! It doesn't need to be completely re-made. The student can open up an "old" card and make the edits on that card. Each card is saved by name and date so it is easy to find an "old" card.

My students don't like the childish graphics in KidTools and KidSkills. How can I get them to use the tools?

Consider using the StrategyTools program that is targeted toward the needs and preferences of older students. The tool programs are a family of similar tools and procedures. Students may move up or down the levels to meet their needs. Go to to get this program.

I don't have time to work individually with students to learn and use tools. Can I use these tool programs with my whole class?

Yes! Lots of teachers report success in using the tools with the entire class to help them learn and use the strategies included in the tools. You can demonstrate the tools to the entire class using an LCD projector or Smart Board, and students can actively participate in creating the tool with you.

Some of these tools might be useful in areas outside my classroom, such as problem solving. Would it be OK to have other resource personnel help kids with tools?

Certainly. Any person working with a student in an instructional or mentoring role could assist students in learning about the tools, helping them make tools, and providing feedback and support for tool use. You might share these tools and approaches with your school's guidance counselor, school psychologist, administrator, and an in-school disciplinary supervisor as well as involve parents.

© 2011 The Curators of the University of Missouri, a public corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Last modified:   October 05, 2011. 08:16:38 am