The short term goals of our one-to-one technology initiative are:
- Teachers publish all course content and resources electronically so students have access at school and home.
- Students transition from paper planners to electronic.
- In each course, teachers identify one or more of the 21st Century Skills (4Cs) to teach and assess.
- Teachers model and partner with library staff to teach digital citizenship to create a culture for how technology is used responsibly in our school.
The long term goal is to ensure all students participate in a wide variety of learning experiences where they receive specific and actionable feedback about their application of the 4Cs - Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Creative Thinking. Course-alike groups of teachers are identifying one or more of these skills to intentionally teach and assess. Over time, across all grade levels and disciplines, students will have multiple opportunities to self reflect about when they are exhibiting these essential life skills.
The MS implementation of 1:1 devices began with a 6th grade pilot in spring 2013. Pilot teachers…for middle school students. Although this is reconsidered annually, at this time the majority of teachers indicate students would not need home internet access to complete assignments.
What have we learned so far?
Middle school students are not high school students, so they need a little more guidance and support regarding appropriate use of the device. Although this was not a surprise, particularly in the first semester of deployment, we do realize we will need to provide additional guidelines and support to help students self-monitor their off-task behavior. That said, teachers report an increased number of application-based assignments, project-based learning, and overall use of technology in the classroom. We plan to administer bi-annual surveys to both teachers and students to monitor progress toward the short term goals.
Useful Links for Middle School Implementation