MSMS is fortunate to have NetText professional Andrew Cunningham on hand one day a week to aid in the digital adoption of curriculum and resources. On this special day, Andrew brought representatives from Google to see how Burlington educators use NetText in a 1:1 technology classroom. Mrs. Volpe’s lessons demonstrated how she uses Google products in conjunction with NetText. They were very impressed with the student motivation, engagement and the fluidity with which the lesson worked as well as how the lesson focused on the necessary skills needed for the real world.
About the Lesson
In Mrs. Volpe’s grade 8 World History class, students collaborate in small groups to learn about various topics such as Islamic Civilization and its impact on the world. With the aid of NetText, a digital resource curator, Mrs. Volpe prepared materials with NetText’s Digital Textbook. The students’ lesson included a Jigsaw activity which is considered to be an educational Best Practice. It trains students to become subject experts and then teach their peers.
The classroom was divided into five “expert” groups. Each student was given a headphone and the groups were asked to watch one of five different videos and transcripts from United Streaming. Each video delved into one aspect of the overall subject.
When students finished viewing, each expert group was asked to answer discussion questions specific to their video. Then students moved into the other groups where they peer-taught what they had learned from their expert groups. Everyone was then given a second set of discussion questions which covered the information in all five videos. This put all the pieces of the lesson together and ensured that everyone participated in learning and teaching and understood all the subject matter. But that was not the end of the lesson.
Using Chromebooks, Google Graphic Organizer and the knowledge that they received in their collaborative learning groups, students completed a shared Venn Diagram
They then projected their finished product using Airplay on the whiteboard. Students took snapshots of their Graphic Organizer with their iPads to use for review and homework. At the end of the lesson students had to complete an Exit Ticket which was a review on NetText, that was submitted to their teacher. These questions pertain to the day’s lessons and help evaluate knowledge learned.
The lesson for the day was that not only is technology fun, but it streamlines education and engages students on a personal and in-depth level. The guests from Google, who included educators, were extremely impressed with the level of technology integration and the amount of work that was covered in a short amount of time. The students were enthusiastic about the lesson and motivated to complete the assignments. In all, it was another successful example of technology blending with education to benefit students.