I teach 5th grade reading at a Title One middle school in the greater Houston area, which was greatly affected by Hurricane Harvey. Many of my students still have homes in repair due to the flood.
Since many of our students were affected by Hurricane Harvey, many of them are feeling the stress at home.
Even so, many of my students come to school with a positive attitude. They are quirky and social and often brighten my day with their humor. I would love to make my classes more fun and independent for the students by implementing more technology into the classroom. I want to allow them the opportunity to learn through discovery and research.
My students come from all different backgrounds. On one side of our school is a residential community of 200-300 thousand dollar houses. On the other side of the school are government assisted apartments. Many of my students are bilingual and many of my students are "latch-key" kids. Regardless of our students' backgrounds, they all strive for success and we are one of the top middle schools in our district.
5th grade is a difficult year for our students. They're in a brand new school, they become more aware of their appearance and their image to their classmates. It's hard for them to keep their focus on classwork and they like to talk more than they like to read. Our group of students this year have a particularly low average in reading level.
I would love for my students to foster a love for reading and build their reading comprehension and fluency through technology.
The students use the Kindle Fire Tablets to access the millions of e-books available to the students through the district's overdrive account. I can also download apps that help students build fluency, vocabulary and comprehension.
I would also love to use the tablets so students can do projects and research on their own so they can be more independent and can be more responsible for their own learning. I have tried to use the laptops provided in my classroom, however they are old, slow and break often. As a result, I am spending more time providing tech support than teaching. The tablets would be extremely beneficial in my classroom and I am excited to provide my students with a class they look forward to come to every day.
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