Fort Smith Public Schools in Fort Smith, AR, implemented a 1:1 program with netbooks in several junior high and high school classrooms to create a more student-centered and project-based focus. Spearheaded by the district’s Professional Development Center, emphasis was first placed on changing the pedagogical paradigm. In this first of two parts, professional development director, Dr. Kathleen Cates, discusses the intensive professional development program, teachers share how the netbooks (mini laptops) encourage student engagement, and you will see students learning at their own pace.
You will see Adrienne Sadovsky, a history teacher helping students understand culture in the early 20th century using a video conferencing unit. Teaching out of an office at the Southwest Educational Cooperative in Monticello, Arkansas, she reaches several schools. She is equipped with a video conferencing unit hooked up to her computer while students sit in a classroom with a proctor and a video conferencing unit. Now, students in smaller sized districts are able to enroll in AP courses and electives they were never offered before.
Megan Power is a kindergarten teacher at Del Sur Elementary School in Poway Unified School District. She says technology has changed the way she teaches and helps her to quickly make data-informed decisions about her instructional design and classroom pace. Megan demonstrates how she uses an interactive whiteboard and a classroom response system in her kindergarten and former 1st grade classroom. You will be amazed how simple these tools are to use. Megan also shares a variety of strategies you can bring to your teachers.