Project Details

Project Title
Supporting at-risk secondary students in the areas of literacy and numeracy through the use of technology



Project Team
Roger Nevin - Teacher-Librarian Adam Scott C.V.I (leader) rogernevin@enagestudents.ca
Cindy Sargeant - Student Success Teacher Adam Scott C.V.I  cindysargeant@enagestudents.ca

Project Summary
This project will improve learning and support at- risk students in both literacy and numeracy courses for grades 9 to 12 by supporting teachers on how to successfully integrate technology into the classroom. These current and relevant web 2.0 tools will engage and motivate ar-risk students

The project will be supported by a written guide that will include strategies, best practices, lesson plans, assessment tools and curriculum to support secondary English and math teachers of at-risk students. This project will also be supported by a web page, a blog, on-line videos - including tutorial videos and podcasts (which we will develop and create). This will ensure the project has a wide audience and is easily accessible and ideas can be shared through the blog between teachers.

This project will be based on research and best practices and is an extension of activities we already do successfully with teachers in our school board (see below), but this project specifically supports the at-risk student.

Rationale
Currently (according to research - see connectingeducation.com ) there is a disconnect between how students use technology in their personal lives and how technology is used in schools. This would include technologies such as podcasts, wikis, on-line video, social networking, on-line documents etc. Educators can engage students by implementing these technologies into the curriculum. 

“Anecdotal evidence and research suggest that teachers' integration of digital tools into instruction is sporadic. Many young people's reliance on digital technology in their outside lives stands in sharp contrast to their limited use of it in school."

A Digital Decade,  Education Week , 3/29/2007, Vol. 26, Issue 30 

Research shows that students who are engaged in school have a lower drop out rates. Also at-risks students work better in more visual and kinetic environments according to Dr, Kathie Nunley (author of The Student's Brain). New technologies provide this environment. 

“Feel connected to the assignment” … “have using success with it”… “fits in with their learning style” Kevin Robinson, History teacher -  discussing implementing new technologies with his grade 10 Locally Developed History course - see interview on Youtube.

"key in using educational technology is to utilize meaningful activities that may engage students to construct their knowledge in different ways, not available before the technology was introduced." Trilling, B., & Hood, P. (1999). Learning, technology, and education reform in the knowledge age or ‘‘We’re Wired, Webbed, and Windowed, Now What?’’ Educational Technology 

This project will give resources and video tutorials for teachers of at risk students to implement these technologies successfully in the classroom.

Project Outcomes

There are four main ways that using these technologies in the classroom improves student learning and development.

1. Students are more engaged in their  class work. We have seen this both in the classroom and according to research. Also because so much of this technology involves creating presentations such as Photo Story and Podcasts teachers often require students to demonstrate their presentations in front of the class. By presenting in front of their peers - students are more motivated to do well.

2. These technologies allow for broader communication which can be between teacher and student, student and student (group work) or even teacher and parent. For example a student who creates an on-line Photo Story video can share that video with their parents. The video can also become an exemplar that the teacher can use in future classes.

3. Many of the tools make the student more efficient so they can produce better and more interesting work.

4. Teaches students 21 century skills which will help them compete in the global economy.
Subpages (1): Audio Logs
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