Innovative Learning Projects Announced-Eric Gjerde, Tracy Maxted, and Charlie Goetzinger, Jefferson High School

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Committed to supporting dynamic and innovative learning environments, the District introduced a process for staff to request technology-related resources that support creative learning environments. Forty three proposals were submitted this fall during the first funding round. The proposals were reviewed and prioritized by a committee including students, community members, and staff. We are pleased to announce and outline the awarded proposals below. A second round of Innovative Learning Project applications will be accepted in January. Funding is from technology SILO (School Infrastructure Local Option Tax) dollars.

Innovative Learning Projects

Jefferson High School 
Eric Gjerde, Charlie Goetzinger, and Tracy Maxted 
Seismometer in Science

What better way to engage students in authenticate learning then capturing earthquakes as they occur and using that information to develop sound understanding of plate tectonics, continental drift, and internal dynamics of the earth. Earthquakes will no longer be something students read about on the USGS Web site. Instead, they will see the data in real time and be able to make any earthquake in the world a reality. Award: Seismometer, computer, large screen monitor\TV, software.

Kennedy High School 
Angie Fogle and Andrew Courtney 
Increasing Student Engagement and 21st Century Employability Skills in the Behavior Focused Classroom through the Use of Technology

Studies have shown that at-risk learners and students with disabilities benefit from the use of technology in the classroom. These students require alternatives to traditional classroom environments to improve their engagement and success in the general education curriculum. iPads tablets will support 21st Century employability skills, provide differentiated instruction opportunities, and alternative formats in which to achieve student learning expectations. Taking advantage of the opportunities available due to rapidly-evolving communication technologies allow the creation of learning environments that address students’ diverse learning needs. Award: 17 iPads, cases, storage/charging station.

Washington High School 
Kristina Dvorak 
Collaborative Design Studio

The project will equip students with tools found in the creative spaces of professional designers and artists, and will create collaborative environments that mimic those found in professional spaces. Laptops and Wacom drawing tablets allow students to create digital works in an intuitive and natural manner, providing them the ability to convey ideas in the a digital environment. Combining art and technology, students develop strong problem solving, creative thinking, communication, collaboration., and accountability skills. Award: 25 MacBook Airs and Wacom tablets, software

Jefferson High School 
Merry Petersen, Chris Rolwes 
Windows 8 Tablets for the Social Studies Classroom

Daily access to tablets will create a new learning environment that will allow students to move from being passive consumers of information to active researchers and investigators. Students will have the opportunity to learn and to engage tools, information, and each other in ways not possible without technology resources. Tablets will allow students access to relevant and up-to-date resources to support their learning, including access to images, music, census data, GIS maps, and cultural explorations. In addition, access to primary and secondary sources in the National Archives, various museums and universities, and video conferencing abilities allow for virtual filed trips and real time discussion of current events. Award: 42 Tablets, storage/charging station.

Taft Middle School
Andrea Powers 
More Opportunities Via iPads

iPads and applications will allow students with significant disabilities to experience many learning opportunities unavailable to them in traditional classrooms. Students with significant disabilities cannot participate in traditional lectures, read text books, complete worksheets, or perform science experiments due to physical or cognitive limitations. iPads have a variety of applications and tools available to provide opportunities for individualized learning. The sound can be enhanced for the hard of hearing, the screen can be magnified and placed very close to the eyes of a student who experiences visual impairments. The touch screen and new eye gaze capabilities allow more independent access for those who have fine and gross motor deficits, capabilities not easily available with the traditional desktop or laptop computers. Award: 2 iPads, cases.

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