Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Technology Update from Boca Raton

It has been a while since I last gave an update about what is happening technology-wise from Boca Raton. Here is a brief update from each school.

Hillel Day School:
The 7th grade collaborative English and Computers project was a huge success. The students successfully completed their 'Glog' after working for three hard weeks collecting materials that would represent their memories, scanning pictures, and using their creativity to express their memories in an online world. We definitely learned a lot with this experience and hope that next time around will be a lot easier. Here is an example:

In addition to that project, the 5th graders and the 8th graders were busy collaborating on a video project about the 13 Colonies. The 5th grade has a 13 Colony fair where they convince the visitors to move to their colonies. This even occurs during the day and parents are not invited, but the teacher wanted the parents to witness the fair. We came up with the idea of having the 8th grade class interview and film the 5th graders with the Flip cameras and we put together a HDS news report about the 13 colonies. Both groups of students enjoyed the project and really represented their roles. Below is a short clip from the videos produced.

Weinbaum Yeshiva High School:
At WYHS I have continued to work one-on-one with teachers and delivered two workshops on Google Apps. WYHS is planning on transitioning their mail and other products to the cloud using Google Apps for Education. In order for this transition to be smooth we have been training the faculty and staff. We have also had a few conversations about how educational technology should look at their school, especially in the new building they are planning to start building this summer.

Donna Klein Jewish Academy:
At DKJA we have been moving along with Google Apps for Education. I have held numerous workshops with the administration, staff, and the faculty where we have been learning how to use the various Google Tools such as Docs, Calendar, Forms, and Sites. We have also begun teaching the students on how to use these services so that they can better collaborate and communicate with their peers and their teachers.
I have also started teaching a Digital Video Elective at the High School. The class begun yesterday so there is not much to report, but I am very excited at the prospect of teaching these students digital video skills, and in producing videos together with them. Since we received a grant from AviChai for this project, we will also be collaborating with both the Hebrew and the Judaic Studies Departments on a video project.