Grade 6 Launches iPad Pilot Program

[ May 07, 2014 ]

In a continuing effort to explore effective ways to use technology to enhance teaching and student learning, the Grade 6 students are participating in an iPad pilot program during the last six weeks of school.

“Though our students have had success with using laptops in the classroom, we would like to expand their access to technology by giving them a device that is easily transportable between home and school,” explains Sean Dagony-Clark, Director of Academic Technology.

“Because of the current structure of our sixth grade program, including quartets, and the developmental stage of sixth graders, we feel the environment is ripe for this type of exploration,” adds Milton J. Sipp, Head of Middle School. “Giving students an iPad—a flexible, portable, and comparatively inexpensive device— allows us to teach differently and allows students to learn differently. Some potential uses we foresee include access to information, writing, organization, and innovative ways for students to show what they know and share what they’ve learned.  We want to encourage in-class research and opportunities for spontaneous digital learning, and we want to help our students learn self-control in the digital realm,” Milton explains.

The Grade 6 teachers in science, English, history, and math are kicking off the pilot program; teachers in other disciplines have been offered the chance to participate as well, if they would like. At the end of the school year, there will be a meeting to deconstruct the project and to see if it is something to be used going into next year.

While the teachers and members of our academic technology department have been preparing for this moment for the past six weeks, “we do anticipate some hiccups as part of the overall learning,” Milton says. “We are prepared to get messy and learn from our experiences.”

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