Strategic Priority: Enhance Learning Through Technology

  • Provide staff and students access to the technology needed to strengthen teaching and learning in ways that are not possible with traditional tools in order to help students master 21st century skills.
  • Utilize technology to provide better access to information and interactive media, a wide range of assessment and feedback tools, and the ability to make learning connections locally, nationally, and globally.
  • Promote innovative uses of technology that advance the district’s educational and operational goals and monitor new approaches for equity, efficiency, and effectiveness.
  • Educate students to use technology productively and responsibly.
Five Year Goals
  1. All Preschool – Grade 4 core classrooms will employ interactive technology daily to improve learning.
  2. All students in Grades 5-12 will utilize individual digital devices daily to improve learning.
  3. All educators will participate in collaborative professional development in the use of educational technology and successfully apply this in the classroom.
  4. Deploy technology tools and utilize digital content to enhance learning, communication, and customer service for students, staff, parents, and community members.

Report to School Committee

A report focusing on enhancing learning through technology was presented to the School Committee on June 7, 2017. 

District

 

Screenshot of the Schoology for Grade 4-12 Educators Course

Schoology for 4-12 Educators is a course that many teachers have participated in over the past few years as we launched Schoology as our learning management system.

 

High School

A screenshot of a website containing student projects on World War II

After visiting the International Museum of World War II in Natick, MA in early May, students in Mr. Scheer?s 1st and 2nd period World Civilizations formed research questions based on an area of interest from the museum. Over the next several weeks, they combed through sources and refined the scope of their research. Then they planned and created projects to showcase their findings. Students were given wide latitude with what topics they could research, and with what format their final product could take. This "Digital WWII Museum" showcases those projects that made use of digital media, falling into three broad categories: written projects, video projects, and website projects.

Photograph of student speaking at Hackathon opening ceremony

The SHS Computer Club and Student Innovation Team hosted a Hackathon on Saturday, April 8th. A hackathon is an event in which student teams compete to write computer code to solve a problem or create something new.

 

An SHS student's rendering of a monster drawn by a grade 2 student

A worldwide project brought to the students in Digital Imaging II at SHS. A project where 2nd graders from Coolidge and Floral drew monsters to later be recreated by using digital art from high school students. This new interpretation of art was a learning experience for both groups of students and a terrific way for our young artists to share their creative illustrations of monsters for the high school students to bring to life. Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator was used.

Screenshot of the title page of an SHS student's photography portfolio

As a summative to the course, students create a Digital Portfolio exhibiting a collection of their work, along with a written reflection on process, tools and materials. Examples shown are from Senior Photography students.

In music class, students had a key and they had to identify the Major and minor triads and how to tune each note of the chord. Using Apple Classroom the teacher was able to monitor student engagement in the assessment as well as see all of their answers at once. The instructor could also "lock" them into Notability or any other app so they couldn't look up the answers online or in their notes.

Assessment for Intro to Guitar. Students were assigned a guitar trio and had to learn all three parts and record them using the ACapella app on their iPad. They recorded part 1 first, then recorded part 2 while listening to part 1, then finally recorded part 3 while listening to parts 1 and 2. Not only did this assignment assess their note and rhythm reading skills, it assessed their tempo and listening skills like balance and blend

Student performing a chemistry simulation

Students in Chemistry class use an interactive tool to simulate the states of matter and phase changes.

AP Physics students created videos for the freshmen to help them review topics for the MCAS test.

Photograph of a student giving an ILE presentation

Students enrolled in the Student Innovation Team course create an Independent Learning Endeavor project based on a passion.

 

Middle School

Student creating artwork from image

The iPad is a tool which is used regularly in art room at Sherwood to draft ideas and to document processes throughout the art development cycle. While working on specific projects, like this self portrait assignment, students created QR codes that show the final product while reflecting through an artist statement. QR codes were attached to the art so that viewers could easily access student reflections.

Screenshot of MS technology resource infographic

This infographic shares the ways students at the middle level use digital devices daily to improve learning. The presentation highlights how students leverage the technology for communication, collaboration, organization, and creativity.

Photograph of student music composition

After a visit by composer George Lam (who will be writing a piece for the Oak Concert Band) the students used his process to be inspired to write music based on pictures of current and past landmarks in Shrewsbury. The students used their iPads to create audio recordings and store both the audio recordings and notations of their work in shared folders. George Lam will be selecting some of the student work to include in his composition for the full band.

 

 

Elementary

Student photo of odd angles

Fourth graders used digital cameras to take pictures of "Odd Angles." This assignment was a summative assessment of a yearlong project based study that consisted of two other art projects: an understanding of Foreshortening and One Point Perspective. The photo had to show an understanding of "One Point Perspective" or "Foreshortening." Students used iPads to write about the process and display both the writing and digital work together.

Photo of students skyping with other students via classroom projector

Third grade students at Coolidge Elementary School used Skype to communicate and collaborate with people around the country on the topic of literature. They Skyped with Natalie Lloyd (author of A Snicker of Magic), Mr. Schu (Ambassador of School Libraries for Scholastic Book Fairs) and fellow third-grade readers in Illinois.

Screenshot of student writing and student feedback on writing

Fourth grade students in Sandra Travers' classroom use the app Seesaw to share work with one another and with families. Pictures and short student work are sent out using this technology so that students and families can view student work frequently and comment on the work they see. This particular assignment involved students giving productive feedback to one another for homework so that the writer of the piece can make revisions to improve upon the piece. These conversations about writing usually stop at 3:15, but with the use of the Seesaw app, discussions about high quality work can continue far past the school day, and students? writing is visible to a much larger audience for productive feedback.

Kindergarten students at Beal Early Childhood Center used the Annotate app to make predictions about snow melting. Using time lapse videos students were able to watch the snow melt over time. Children then designed and built structures to stop effects of the sun melting their snowman.

Second grade students at Floral Street School documented observations made throughout the school year of the nature trail. The videos have QR codes that will displayed that will allow trail guests to observe the seasonal changes that take place on the nature trail when they visit.

Fourth grade students at Paton worked together to create a PSA encouraging coat donations to needy people in the community. They utilized Explain Everything as well as video.

Screenshot of Grade 4 resources in Schoology

This is a screenshot showing the Grade 4 Teachers group in Schoology. All grade 4 teachers in the district are members of this group. This group is a site for collaboration for the 4th grade teachers across the district, and it contains resources to support teachers in integrating iPads into their instruction.

Screenshot of Grade 4 iPad implementation plan

This is the implementation plan used for the grade 4 1:2 initiative. It contains links to resources, tutorials, and examples of student work for grade 4 teachers to use as they began to integrate iPads into their instruction. It also included dates for optional face to face training sessions on PD days for teacher to attend as needed.

Screenshot of feedback through Seesaw

The speech therapist, Arlena Boyle, at Parker Road Preschool, used SeeSaw to share information about children's speech progress and strategies with families. Arlena used SeeSaw to send videos and pictures of students during speech sessions allowing families to use strategies at home and carry over what is being done at school. Parents sign up to receive notifications when new videos/photos are posted and provide feedback.