My students need access to Technology through the use of a Tablet computer to reach beyond the classroom walls and communicate with Scientists and other classrooms.
So often I hear "Why do we need to learn this?". I would like to EXCITE my students by allowing them access to the technology opportunities that our current budget can not support.
Our school is in a rural community where a third of our students receive free or reduced lunch due to low family incomes.
Approximately a fourth of my students live in a government funded housing project where very few have family cars to find employment and purchase necessities. My classroom is filled with eager fourth graders every year who love to learn and apply what they know outside of the walls of our classroom. They are excited about using technology in any way they are able to. However, reserving time in our school computer lab is difficult due to the number of classrooms sharing the space. None of our computers are capable of reaching out to Skype with others around the world. Recent budget cutbacks have eliminated technology classes and with this many educational opportunities for my students.
While teaching my students about the Scientific process I will allow them to communicate with "real" Scientists and ask them questions about their projects. Some scientists will recruit classrooms to help them with data collection. Students can Skype with other classrooms in book studies designed at their own reading and interest level. Many of my students are reluctant to write during Writers Workshop and with current technology apps they will be allowed to speak their story into the Tablet and then add the computer graphics to create a top notch story. We will be able to take Virtual Field trips to places that our current budget would not allow. Advanced students can create research projects based on their interests and even learn a new language. Struggling readers can improve on their fluency by practicing their reading with an app that records their progress. Many students find it boring to practice their math facts but are excited about using technology to do so.
I would like to give my students a quality education that goes beyond the walls of our classroom and helps them to improve on their current situation.
Many of my students come from homes that don't understand the value of a good education and I want to inspire them to keep going. This will improve on the educational attitude of future generations as well. I want all of my students to see how their learning applies to their world and to realize that each one of them can make a difference.
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