Piloting Chromebooks in sixth grade classroom this school year

This fall, North Branch Area Public Schools will launch a one-to-one pilot program in one sixth grade classroom designed to study taking “technology in the hands of students” to the next level.

This classroom will receive Chromebooks enough for all students at the beginning of the school year. Students in this class will have access to their devices throughout the school day and will be scheduled together in Science, English, Applied Studies and Advisory.

Our Discover Digital Devices initiative, implemented in the 2011-12 school year — first at the high school and then the middle school — has been very successful in laying the groundwork for this pilot program. It allowed NBAPS the ability to provide all-important technology education without having to provide each student a device, something that was not possible considering our financial restraints.

An initiative like D3 can create issues, however, and one of the challenges we have faced with D3 is that staff have sometimes experienced difficulty working with classrooms that include multiple devices, all of which can function differently.

This fall’s sixth grade classroom pilot is intended to create a classroom setting in which the same device is available to all students. Chromebooks make an excellent choice for the project as they are versatile, affordable, and age appropriate.

New Directors Darin Marcussen (Technology) and David Treichel (Curriculum, Instruction, Alternative Programs) are providing leadership and support for this effort and the middle school is enthusiastic to start working with this pilot project. It is the intention of staff to learn from this implementation so that it can be expanded and improved in the future.

If you have any questions about this project, please don’t hesitate to call me at (651) 674-1011.

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