My students need 6 Kindles tablets by Amazon in order to complete my class set, we currently have 8 and I have a class size of 20-25 students.
I teach middle school in an impoverished urban district. About 90% of my students qualify for free lunch from the federal government. Last year I was in a building that had an I Pad cart. When my students were exposed to primary sources via the tablets I have had 100% engagement. It was awesome!
My students live in a neighborhood that has fallen in disrepair.
When the industrial base left the area, so did the money to support the community. Our school district only receives 54% of the state aid it is required to get by law. Graffiti cover public buildings, absentee landlords collect rent. I often have students in crisis due to fires, and family members incarcerated. Last year there were a number of homicides mainly the result of gang violence. The urban blight breaks my heart. My students however are some of the bravest kids I've met. They come to school despite having to care for younger siblings late into the night. They come to school after losing everything. They come to school hoping for a better tomorrow. Their capacity for love and loyalty cannot be measured. I have never felt so needed, and so humbled by their inner strength. My mission is to close the gaps in their academic skills that have mainly been created by an environment beyond their control.
Students will be able to view scans of primary sources from the National Archives, and photo galleries from the Library of Congress. Students will be able to read first hand accounts from immigrants, and survivors of the holocaust. They can see the person's face, and hear their actual voice. Using these sources students will be able to collaborate and construct inferences, and conclusions that are more in-depth than from the textbook or the paper copy. If the reading is above their reading level the tablet has the capability to read the document to them. Lastly, middle school students love to hold tablets and have control of their own learning. This student-centered sense of power connects with them in a way that direct instruction could never do. We've already completed fundraising for some Kindles, this next group, combined with another grant, will give each child their own tablet for class.
My students have been condemned to a poverty cycle that is often broken only through education.
They began kindergarten years behind their peers in middle class school districts. If myself, and my fellow teachers can't get them caught up the likely hood of them joining a gang, facing incarceration, and dropping out increases tenfold. I am their best chance and to do this I need to try every method to improve their learning, and reach out for every resource that just might engage them further.
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|Fire, 7" Display, Wi-Fi, 8 GB - Includes Special Offers, Black • Amazon Business||$49.99||6||$299.94|
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