Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Technology Integration Field Trip

Over the past week, I took a little time to go on a technology integration field trip through our building.  My goal was to identify ways our staff leverages technology to guide, expand, and enhance learning objectives. Below are the results of my trip:

A pencast on Mrs. Lundeen's Website

For important lectures Mrs. Lundeen selects one student to create a pencast.  The student uses a Smart Pen to take notes.  The smart pen records Mrs. Lundeen's lecture as the student takes notes.  At the end of class Mrs. Lundeen posts the pencast on her website.  Students can access the pencasts if they were absent or to review for assessments.  Watch the entire pencast on Mrs. Lundeen's website: http://bit.ly/uAfPM5

Enhanced research tools in Mr. Bakke's 8th grade Social Studies 


Students are using Diigo, Weebly, Google Docs, free video/audio converters, the Library of Congress primary resources for teachers website, and other web 2.0 tools to conduct research for their 2012 National History Day Project.  The theme for 2012 is Revolution, Reaction, and Reform in History.

Blogging in Mrs. Wallace's High School English Class
Blog Activity

Students are creating blogs to track their reading projects throughout the semester.  In each post students summarize, reflect, and make prediction.  All students are required to review and post comments on other students blogs.  Mrs. Wallace uses a Doc to help student access each others blogs.

Online tests in Mr. Hundt's room.
Mr. Hundt's Website

Students in Mr. Hundt's classes take most of their tests online.  Students who need their test read to them go directly to his website.  Mr. Hundt uploads each test on youtube.  Students use an iPod or an iPad to listen to the test.  If they need a question re-read they can simply back up the youtube clip.

Gizmos in Mr. Kaus's 7th grade Math class


Students in Mr. Kaus's math class use Gizmos to deepen their understanding of the concepts of area, volume, and surface area.  Gizmos are online simulations that allow students to inquire and explore concepts at their own pace.  In the lesson I had the opportunity to observe, Mr. Kaus used one of our COW Labs  (Computer on Wheels).  Using the COW allowed each student to use these online manipulatives at their own pace.


Using Google Docs to coordinate extra-help passes for EBLOCK and to track tier II interventions.
EBLOCK is an opportunity for students to receive additional instructional support during the school day.   Twice a week we run an alternative schedule that allows for a 25-minute block of time for students who are struggling in a class to get extra help.  Class advisers access student grades via Skyward Family Access.  Student in need of support are assigned to specific teachers via a shared Google Doc.   Enrichment opportunities are provided for students demonstrating good grades and behavior in all classes.  Every three weeks teachers document the Tier II interventions they are providing students at-risk for failure in their classes.   The Intervention Log is a shared Google Doc monitored by RtI coaches who assure students in need are getting intervention support.

Students taking online exams via Skyward Mrs. Morrison's 7th grade Language Arts

Two fixtures that anchor Mrs.Morrison's grammar instruction are grammar challenges and grammar quizzes Quizzes are completed on the computer using Skyward’s Online Assignment Templates.  The grammar challenges, a formative assessment,  are posted on Monday; students have until Friday midnight to complete their challenge, and using their notes is encouraged.  Throughout the week,  Mrs. Morrison is able to observe the questions in which students are struggling and address their needs to increase understanding throughout the week.  Thursday is a day dedicated to review and take the on-line grammar quiz.  Similar to the challenge, feedback is immediate.  Students see their grades and are able to peruse the grammar quiz to observe the incorrect questions and what they should have marked. 


QR code review scavenger hunt in Mrs. Mosley's and Mrs. Wallace's Language Arts 9 class
The 9th grade Language Arts classes went on an Animal Farm Review Scavenger Hunt using QR codes.  The class was split into groups of 4, each with a different set of questions.  The groups started with a question, which was displayed on an iPad.  The students then had to hunt throughout the school for the correct answer.  Once the answer was found, students scanned the next question.  After 10 questions, all students found their way back to the classroom to do a final vocabulary exercise.

IPOD translation activity in Ms. Glaze's Spanish class


Students worked in pairs to translate information at different stations throughout the room.  iPod's are used to help students find meanings and words they do not know.

Student created yearbook in Ms. Curtis's Desktop Publishing class.


Sttudents in Desktop Publishing class are currently producing the school annual completely online.  Using Jostens Yearbook Avenue, students create a username and password that allows them to log in and work on their pages anywhere there is internet access.  Last year was the first year the annual was produced online.  Many upperclassmen have had the opportunity to produce the book both ways.  Overall, students prefer designing the yearbook online.  Senior Amber Dahl, said "Yearbook Avenue is more user friendly compared to the old way the yearbook was produced."  Senior Kelli Schmitz added, "Online you have all the necessary tools to complete the page in one spot." Mrs. Curtis reports using this technology has saved the yearbook club time and money.

This list is by no means comprehensive, I didn't include the musical composition projects in Mrs. Miller's class, the collaborative virtual zoo in Mr. Hanley's class, How-to videos in the in Mrs. Mosley's innovations lab, a blended learning environment through Quia in Mr. Heinberg's Agriculture classes, or interactive Smart board activities in Mrs. Huntzicker's room.  It is exciting to work with teachers and support staff  who are continually reflecting, researching, and refining their practices in an effort to improve student achievement.  These opportunities would not be possible without the support from Cashton community.

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