On February 23rd we celebrated Digital Learning Day with countries worldwide! We opened our doors to Kokomo School Administrators, IT support staff, members of the press, community members, and parents to visit our building and classrooms to get a glimpse into a typical day at our Tech Academy.
Every day our goal is to integrate technology effectively into our classrooms. With proper integration techniques technology can enhance the learning process and provide challenges to our students. It also allows a variety of learners to practice new skills and demonstrate mastery of grade-level standards in multiple ways.
Several classrooms experimented with new innovative ways to integrate technology into their classrooms for this special event. Our first graders created "talking book reviews" on Chatterpix. They turned images of books into talking photos using the camera, audio recorder, and filter tools.
Another classroom connected with students worldwide on a class project using the Pen Pal Schools website. Third grade students connect with students in the United Kingdom, India, Australia, New Zealand, Chicago and Texas. Right now their group are collaborating and communicating together with others around the globe discussing art and literature. "We get to talk to people around the country and learn about their cultures,"-Elijah, third grade student.
Our specials teachers embraced the technology spirit and integrated technology into their studies as well. Our music teacher, Jessica Sobie, challenged her fifth graders to "play" songs that were childhood favorites by coding the Dash Robot to play on his xylophone or by using wires and Playdoh with a digital keypad called a Makey Makey. Terri Helms, our art teacher, had students create book characters out of Playdoh and add voices over their photos. In the gymnasium, Mary Madden, used pedometers to track physical activity and chart the step count compared to other classrooms.
Our Makerspace was also a popular room for students to come build, invent, and tinker throughout the day. Students in Wonder League Robotics Club used their coding skills to race their robots. Second graders learned how to build electrical circuits, using Snap Circuits, to turn on a fan, switch the colors of a light or to make music.
Overall, we are very thrilled with all of the activities that occurred on Digital Learning Day. We believe integrating technology within learning activities creates a high level of engagement with our students. It also motivates our students to showcase their learning in a variety of ways.