FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What device is best?
Every student is different and may have differing needs for technology. Consider the needs of your individual child to determine what is the right device for his/her learning. That said, we are seeing great success with students who are using Chromebooks. They are affordable (many are well under $200), small & light (the 11” models seem ideal), have great battery life (most will run in excess of 6 hours on a charge), and support a wide range of student learning activities, from using Google docs (online word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, websites, and more) to general web applications.
For more specifications and things to consider when selecting a device, check out the "What to Buy
" page linked at the left.
What if our family cannot afford a device?
We understand that financial situations vary, and that sometimes there just isn’t money for that “one more thing”. If purchasing a device for your student is not feasible, please contact Wendy Schroeder (651-982-8598, firstname.lastname@example.org) between June 15th and July 31st. Students and a guardian will be required to come into the school in order to sign a usage contract before receiving a device for use during the school year.
Why require technology?
The key to success in this Age of Information is the ability to access, evaluate, use, and even create information effectively. Developing these informational literacy skills is critical for today’s learners, and is often dependent on technology use.
Technology provides fantastic tools for students to learn, explore, and
collaborate in all subject areas. In this current school year, we have been piloting BYOD with all students taking biology. (This represents roughly one-third of our student population.) Biology students have been using an online textbook that comes with interactive and multimedia tools designed to help learning come alive for students. In addition, students have used:
- spreadsheets to collect, manipulate, and graph data
- word processing to create reports, including digital images
- sharing tools to perform real-time collaboration with peers and instructors
- simulation activities to explore topics like genetics and biochemistry
As we expand the BYOD program beyond the biology domain, we anticipate the power of technology to be a great asset supporting student learning and growth in all areas of the curriculum.
Will technology be used in every class, every day?
Technology is a tool, and it will be used when and where it is appropriate and meaningful to learning. It is important to realize that there are areas of learning where technology may only provide limited support, or may even be inappropriate. Our goal is not to be "all-tech, all the time". The goal is to harness the power of technology when it adds value to the learning process.