Observations!

Praire Creek Elementary School, Andover Kansas

Tracy Wood is a first grade teacher at Prairie Creek Elementary who just got to using Chromebooks, which are practice books on a laptop. The Chromebooks help engage students with quizzes, games and a number of different stories for the children to practice reading.

Ms. Woods, is beginning to use the Chromebooks in her class room. She had just been to a training in order to help her and her students become familiarized with the laptops. A Chrome book is given to each child with a numerous amount of books for them to practice on. Students have different reading levels that they can choose, depending on what they feel comfortable reading. Each book they read, earns them points. The program gives the students options to either read a long, or read to themselves, and practice quizzes about each book and games that tie to each story.

Engaging students with Promethium Boards

Ms. Wood mentioned she uses her promethium quite a lot. It is easier for her to navigate, engage students and use links. Students where learning about the different sounds used in writing. She had students go up and "drag" the words that corresponded to the right section with the electronic pen; students really seemed to understand how to do it and seemed to enjoy going up to the board and using the technology.

In another occasion, she taught them about the United States Constitution, and showed the students graphics of our branches and different framers at that time. She had silly marching drum rolls play as a slide began and the students really seemed to like that.

Pros of Technology

Students seemed to love the laptops! I think it is easier for students to read their books at their own pace without having to wait on other books when sharing. The students used head phones and sat quietly reading and practicing. They had the option to read to themselves or have the computer read to them, so they could read along. If students read by themselves they received 50 points from the program, if the computer read to them, they received 10. This I think is encouraging for the child because if they try to read by themselves, they get more points!

It's convenient for teachers!!

Mrs. Wood sat in reading centers, helping students without using technology, while the students sat at their desks with their Chromebooks. She had them switch around that way they could all come work with her and still get to use their Chromebooks.

Also, Mrs. Wood had to turn in a lunch order to the office by mail. She simply marked who was present and what they wanted for lunch and sent it with a click.

Communication

Students were assigned to e-mail their parents and they seemed to be exited to be talking to their parents via e-mail. When a few parents replied they seemed to be very happy that their children contacted them from school!

Cons of Technology

Technical Diffilculties

There where a few problem that happened during my observations. Since the students and the teacher had only been familiar with the Chromebooks for a couple of weeks, it was tough for the students to log into the computer and the WiFi Network. Students had their log in information in a packet at their desks but some of them didn't know how to use it, even though the teacher had explained it to them. students with long last names had more trouble typing things in, especially since they where not familiar with the keyboard. Others seemed to log in fast and gave them a head start in their assignment.

When the students got to send the e-mails to their parents, some took longer to type than others, but Mrs. Woods had told them that once they got done, they could go on and play reading games. The work time everyone had was different due to the fact that not all students logged in and started at the same time.

Distractions

Not to many distraction occurred because what they where doing seemed interesting to the students. There where a few kids that wanted to play other games rather than what they were assigned to do but managed to get back on track.

Allowing to teach!

Mrs. Woods told me that I could definitely go in and teach her students a technology related lesson! She said she is not sure when but we will stay in touch and she can have me come in and do my lesson plan! She will provide me with a topic, that way I can think about what I want to teach her class!

Butler Letter