Technology is an ever-changing tool that we integrate into the core subjects. We know that hardware and software change quickly; therefore, we focus on transferable life skills. Students learn digital citizenship, internet safety, and digital literacy skills as they share Google Docs, maintain blogs, program, research, create media projects, and present information. Programming in robotics and developing keyboarding skills round out the lower school technology experience.
In Robotics, students practice critical thinking skills as they plan, program, test, and communicate using a variety of tools. The robotics program starts with learning and understanding the basic language that is used in programming (coding). This language is then later transferred into learning how to program a Bee-Bot, a programmable floor robot used to teach directional language and programming to children in KA and kindergarten. Students then move into programming Lego Wedo and Lego Mindstorm robots where the focus is on gathering and analyzing data from sensors to solve real life problems.
In keyboarding, students practice touch typing to help them communicate information effectively and efficiently. These strategies develop muscle memory, key recognition, fingering positioning, and correct posture. We use programs that guide students through sequential lessons, such as Dance Mat Typing in grade 2, and UltraKey in grades 3-5.
In terms of access, students in grades KA-3 utilize iPads in their classrooms to explore, learn, and create. Students in grades 3-5 have 1:1 laptop access, which allows them to communicate and collaborate, research, analyze, and apply information in their classroom setting. All students also have access to two fully equipped desktop computer labs.