From 6:30 to 8pm this evening, my daughters’ elementary school held their 1st annual Technology Night:
Experience how we use technology in the classrooms. This is a hands on activity for the parents and students. Please come and visit classrooms at each grade level where you can see various methods of technology use.
This thing was like a mini-conference with close to 30 tracks over 3 time slots. I’m not kidding. Check this out:
I’ve been blown away by this school before, particularly when I marveled at the professionalism that goes into their live, student-produced,
student-driven daily announcements I saw a few months ago. It was done at a level I would not expect from anything less less than a magnet high school.
What the Heck is a SMART Board?
A SMART Board is defined as an “interactive whiteboard.” Their site has a brochure, some videos to watch & a lot of info, but this post is to share my impressions of it.
When PTA did fundraisers for these boards over the last few years, it was made known that their goal was to get a SMART Board in every classroom, and each one cost around $5,000. Worth every penny.
I’ve been impressed seeing the school’s SMART Boards in the past, after seeing the teachers drive them during open houses.
Tonight I got to see student interaction. It was fascinating.
Watching the industry change from mouse-driven events to touch-enabled, and seeing these kids feel so comfortable on them was pretty fantastic. I was blown away watching how well both the teachers AND the students knew how to use them & integrate into the web-hosted, subscription-based educational resources (that each student had to log into before accessing). Seeing how well these teachers are learning this technology & using it so extensively made me very happy.
As a developer, what I saw was a big wall tablet / slate. It was impressively responsive & ran on Windows 7. As a mom who wants her kids to grow up to be as nerdy as I am, I saw opportunities. I saw potential for partnerships with companies like Codecademy. I saw potential for getting kids on Windows 8 Slates in the classroom (their next “wish list” item is iPads, so why not?)
I took a few short videos to try to bring to my blog something I don’t see every day or normally have access to. I hope you find watching the student interaction as interesting as I did :-) Enjoy!
Wii in the Gym
The Gym teacher had set up Wiis all over the gym with wall projectors for their Technology theme. Since the agenda only enabled us to attend 3 of the (almost 30) sessions, we headed off to the gym for the 3rd one (because [surprise] the kids wanted to play on the Wii). It was very cool. I’ll wrap up with those:
Wii in the gym was set up well & turned out to be a huge hit.
Lauren was serious about dance precision
Lauren Playing Wii Dance
I don’t really have a takeaway from this post, other than I have been tinkering with tablet programming for a while and have not seen anything like this, so I felt compelled to share =D
*A special thank you goes out to Mrs. Laird for helping me share this wonderful learning environment that’s happening in these classrooms.