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The Head's Blog

Learning Re-Defined

The full integration of iPads has been in the making at Buckley for several years, and I am thrilled to announce that we have rolled out another 180 iPads: 4 in each early childhood classroom; one for each two students in grades 1-4; one for each upper school student. All the teachers were given iPads last year.

 

All the iPads come with cases that are designed for different age groups. In the upper school each iPad is equipped with a bluetooth external keyboard, a stylus, and a charger. Stduents are expected to bring them to school, fully charged, every day, ready to get to work. Students are able to save their work using eBackpack, which will give them access to their files from any device, anywhere, anytime.  

 

I see the integration of iPads in the students’ experience, in particular on the scale that Buckley is advancing it, as nothing less than transformational. The model we are using for the implementation of our iPad program was developed by Dr. Ruben Puentedura and is referred to as SAMR: Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition. Our goal is to move up the SAMR scale as follows:

 

STEP # 1(Substitution): using iPads as simple substitutes to perform the same tasks as was done before the use of computers (taking notes, for instance)

STEP # 2 (Augmentation): using iPads to augment learning and perform common tasks using computer technology (doing research online, for instance)

STEP#3 (Modification): using iPad technology to modify the work that students are expected to produce (creating a podcast or movie to demonstrate their understanding of a particular concept, for instance).

STEP #4 (Redefinition): using iPads to perform tasks that could not have been performed prior to having access to this type of technology (collaborating with students from around the globe on projects and doing research “live” with teams of students from other parts of the world, for instance).

 

All Buckley teachers are somewhere on the SAMR continuum, and our goal is to provide sufficient meaningful professional development for them to have the tools to move up to the next level, wherever the starting point is.

 

We have made significant adjustments to our infrastructure to support the increase in iPad use by creating more robust access points throughout the building. Similarly, our bandwidth has been doubled to ensure a faster connection.

 

Needless to say, this is a major move for Buckley; one that makes our school a leading-edge model for innovative teaching and learning.

 

 

 

Posted by jmjuhel on Wednesday September 25, 2013
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