St. Anthony-Immaculate Conception School uses Google Docs for Education as one tool to teach 21st Century Skills of creativity, collaboration, and communication. Each student in grades 3-8 is given a school email address that can be used to communicate with peers or teachers. SAIC, thanks to a generous grant, has invested in 20 iPad Minis to facilitate the incorporation of technology into the curriculum. Teachers can check out all 20 iPads so that each students can use one during the lesson or teachers, especially in the primary grades, can check out a few of them to create learning centers where children rotate through the various centers.
Our K-3 technology curriculum focuses on basic computer use. The students utilize several programs that reinforce classroom concepts while also allowing them to practice their basic motor skills at operating the keyboard and mouse. Computer-based programs such as Didi and Ditto, as well as online sites such as Starfall and Mathletics accomplish this.
Our 3-5 technology curriculum introduce the students to word processing, presentation, and spreadsheet software. Third and fourth grade also receive computer class twice each week as we utilize Type to Learn to teach basic keyboarding skills. Students are introduced in a more formal manner by completing the online course “Welcome to the Web”.
Our 6-8 technology curriculum continues to build on the basics as they continue to make presentations, written reports and other projects. Computer class now focuses on some of the other technologies available with the Apple iLife suite; GarageBand, iMovie, and iPhoto. Students are required to complete an safety course online provided by Shield the Vulnerable.
This is completed at the beginning of the year and is extended by producing a movie about their grade level topic that ranges from bullying to abuse. As our students mature in their use of various software programs they are often given the choice of which program to utilize to demonstrate their learning. This introduces them to problem solving skills and the ability to “learn how to learn” software.
In addition to weekly computer classes, teachers make use of open time to sign up their classes to utilize the computer lab to complete various project-based learning assignments.