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Strategies for Using and Integrating Current and Emerging Technologies
Baylen Middle School integrates technology by giving each student a laptop or devices such as iPads or the Nexus 7 Google pad. There will be free Internet service for home and school so that students are able to have full access at all times. Both the flipped classroom and problem based learning method will be used to deliver the information to our students. According to Millman, the flipped classroom increases the time to spend on activities and the students’ productivity, especially in the blended classrooms like we have created at Baylen Middle School (Millman, 2012). Every classroom will have state of the art equipment such as smart boards and student response systems. Students will use a variety of methods to help them learn the material and learn how to be more productive in the 21st century. Some examples of the forums being used are blogs, podcasts and vodcasts, Wikis, video conferencing, Blackboard, and videos. Teachers and students will be trained and kept up to date on all of the emerging technologies. Our teachers will be required to use technology every day to produce lessons that are interactive and hold the students attention. Teachers at Baylen Middle School are expected to be facilitators not traditional teachers in the classroom. There will also be computer labs for student use when needed. Each student has an individual learning plan (ILP), which will be his or her guide for progressing through the curriculum. Students will work both individually and in groups to accomplish their goals.According to Drummond, schools can survive with an online education program if they have good and effective teachers, the right objectives, hands-on activities, real-world education, rigorous assessments and good communication tools (Drummond, 2008).
Technology will be the base for learning science, math, social studies, and language arts, plus vocational, technical, and social skills at our school. It will be a blend of training for social skills with Common Core Standards infused throughout the curriculum. Even though there will be some traditional learning most will be in an online format. All textbooks will be in an electronic version format. There will be four days of school-based instruction with technology infused throughout and then one day of home based instruction, using technology for assessment, application, and standards mastery. Real-world concepts will be researched and implemented using technology. Students will be able to have first-hand experiences with students around the world in a video conferencing forum. One on one e-learning will help students master their weak areas and move through the curriculum quickly. There will be both summative and formative assessments for placement and progression. Teachers will create video lessons, which will allow students to work at home using Camtasia Studio 2. The videos and menus are setup on Blackboard ahead of time and students are given a prescription to follow. They can work at their own pace to complete lessons with a time restriction to have a certain amount completed by the end of the year. The student moves to the next level when they have made a certain score on the assessment for that lesson. With lessons being computer based this allows students to move as quickly as needed to be successful. Students will use Wikis to answer questions and respond to each other and the teacher. Project based learning opportunities are also setup on the Blackboard to allow students to work through the concepts.According to Bacalu, the Blackboard platform offers many choices for teaching online and is more successful and user friendly than a traditional method of teaching (Bacalu, 2012). Online learning allows students to collaborate from home and school with other students. Teachers can also interact with students from the convenience of home. Students will work together to make their own podcasts or vodcasts to help get a better understanding of the material and real-world issues.According to Rogers-Estable, Web 2.0 tools offer many exciting ways to help students learn successfully (Rogers-Estable, 2009).
Using technology as the basis for our school will better prepare our students for high school, then college and eventually their career choices. According to Pelham, Crabtree, and Nyiri, educators and policymakers need to pay attention to the positive influence of computers and information technology on student learning when they are developing educational curriculum and ideas (Pelham, Crabtree, & Nyiri, 2009). Where ever there is Internet students are able to work on the lessons, which helps them move through the curriculum and make up for any deficiencies more quickly than with traditional learning. Students are able to gain real-world skills that will be useful for the future. They will learn how to work collaboratively with other people from all walks of life. The students will learn much-needed problem solving skills that corporations look for in their future employees. Baylen Middle School will not have the limitations that many middle schools today have because of their lack of technology and individual attention. Due to this plan each student will be able to master their own skills based on their individual needs. Without the technology teachers would not be able to deliver this individualized type of plan that handles the needs of all students regardless of their previous backgrounds or issues.



References

Bacalu, F. (2012). E-learning-the ultimate educational tool . Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice , 4(2), 742-751.


Drummond, G. (2008). Success in online education: Creating a roadmap for student success . 5(4), 43-48.


Millman, N. (2012). The flipped classroom strategy: What is it and how can it best be used? Distance Learning, 9(3), 85-87.


Pelham, B., Crabtree, S., & Nyiri, Z. (2009). Technology and education: The power of the personal computer. Harvard International Review, Summer , 74-76.


Rogers-Estable, M. (2009). Web 2.0 and distance education: Tools and techniques. Distance Learning, 6(4), 55-60.