The use of technology in the classroom is nothing new. Computers have been used by students for years for everything from simple processes such as word processing to advanced functions such as video production. However, with the advent of even greater technological innovation comes an opportunity to enhance the learning for our students in ways that were never before thought possible. Technology is no longer just a ‘tool’ for the classroom. It can now be fully embedded in the learning environment and used to provide greater collaboration, knowledge acquisition, differentiated learning, learning measurement and student engagement. The current technology capabilities would allow our students to become 21st century learners.
The Upper Dauphin Area School District has often been on the forefront of technology in education. However recent advances in technology have occurred faster than the School District has been able to implement them on a large-scale basis. Consequently, the students have not been provided with as robust of an education as would have been possible had the School District provided access to the latest technological advances in a timelier manner. This learning and education gap puts our students at a disadvantage as they enter post-secondary education, the workforce and the military. The enhanced learning environment that we will refer to as part of this project looks to not only utilize the technology in the classroom, but to embed the technology within and across curricula for all content areas. Having access to such an environment at the high school level will help our students function at an advanced level as they progress to their chosen careers and professions.
The primary goal of the project is to implement the technology, professional education and technological support necessary to provide a 21st century learning experience for the School District’s students in the most cost effective manner.
As schools have moved in the direction of a one-to-one learning concept, they have been transformed from traditional classrooms filled with lecture and memorization to modern classrooms filled with enhanced interaction and far reaching creativity. It is our hope to transform the learning environment for Upper Dauphin Area’s students in a direction that will prepare them to become lifelong learners and creative problem solvers. Our desire is to not just produce productive citizens, but citizens that have the knowledge and background to reach their complete potential in multiple areas of their lives.