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High Tech Learning

From left to right: Pat Rawls, Golf Tournament Organizer, Kim Williams, teacher, Alice Dover, teacher and School Improvement Team representative, Julie Blanton, PTO board, spiritwear chairperson, Karen Murphy, PTO board, Christa Haller, PTO board, Lori Burke, PTO board, Marni Menkin, teacher, and Jay Jones, principal, celebrate the installation of the final Promethean Boards at Marvin Elementary.

Every classroom in Marvin Elementary School now has it's own Promethean Board.  Preschoolers are practicing writing activities with large, cross-body strokes, 3rd graders are voting and responding to questions, and fifth graders are breaking apart irregular shapes to find the area.

The school administration and staff and the PTO shared a vision to use modern technology in all classrooms, and focused their efforts to make it happen.  The first board came into the school 4 years ago through a Team 21 grant awarded to teacher Marni Menkin.  The final ones were installed this fall.

"It makes teaching and learning more fun," says Menkin, when asked about the Promethean Board technology.  "It's enhanced an interactive, engaging learning community.  It's raised the level of instruction."

Incorporating the technology on such a broad scale was a big commitment.  At approximately $3000 each, the investment was around $100, 000.  The school used Boosterthon money to purchase boards, and the PTO backed the vision, prioritizing technology for the funds raised in activities as simple as Box Top collections and as big as golf tournaments and fall festivals.

The students are the primary beneficiaries.  Matthew Warner, 3rd grader, said, "We can all see it, because it's a big board."  The boards not only project whatever the teacher pulls up on the laptop, they are interactive, allowing the students to impact the computer by "writing" on the board, moving icons, skyping with classes or professionals at other locations, designing flipcharts, and more.

3rd grader Illeana Epps also points out an environmental benefit, "You don't have to use all that paper," Epps noted.

Ultimately, the students are learning from and through and about technology, preparing them to be lifelong learners and contributing members of a global, technological society.

Written by: Wendy Mays, Kindergarten teacher
Posted: Dec 10, 2012 by Marni Menkin

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