There are many reasons why we have a BYOD environment. We have been on a journey to integrate ICT more seamlessly into our teaching and learning for some time and BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) is another step in this journey for us. The reasons outlined in our community evening for continuing our growth and using ICT in our classrooms were;
- Our students are online from birth and this is their world and how they learn
- We are preparing them for a thriving future as their future employment will involve technology
- To develop cyber safety and personal protection competency in an authentic context
- To meet the expectations of the NZ curriculum for connected global citizens
- ICT helps to develop the key competencies in our students; managing self, participating and
contributing, relating to others others, thinking and using language symbols and text.
- Using ICT engages, motivates and inspires students
- It enables us to provide personalised learning in a manageable way
- It enables collaboration in many ways such as student to teacher or student to student (akonga)
- Allows anywhere/anytime access to learning
- Enables us to create more learning time by making the most of every learning minute, having
planned group work ready and available immediately, reducing time waiting for instructions and time needed for handing out sheets etc.
- Proved to make a difference to the academic outcomes of students
For more explanation of these points please see the movie of the Community Evening.
Senior students will be building towards a 1:1 environment. This does not mean that junior classes will not have ICT integrated into their classroom programme, it will just look different in these years. Year 1-3 students will be using a mixture of ipads and Chromebooks in their learning day. They will also be learning a variety of skills to ensure that when they transition to year 4 they are ready for the 1:1 environment they will be moving into.
By allowing families to purchase a chromebook for their child to use during the learning day, greater access to technology will be available to all our students. Year 4 students have been included in our BYOD group for many carefully considered reasons as outlined under the “Why we are going 1:1” question above.
The decision of which device to select for BYOD was also very carefully considered. We were looking for a device that would be easy to transport between home and school, had a battery life that would last the school day, was good value for money, required little maintenance, allowed to add things to the login without needing the device, was durable, ran quickly and smoothly and was simple to navigate.The Chromebook ticked all the boxes. It was trialled by the Board of Trustees, Year 6 students and the teachers and met all the criteria that we felt was most important.
Since this trial we continue to identify a device that will best meet the criteria above.
Any good quality Chromebook is appropriate for the BYOD environment. It's important to consider battery life and screen size.
The Chromebook comes with a one year warranty.
No you do not, this is an optional initiative your child will be provided with a school Chromebook to use. The BOT will still be investing in ICT equipment for the school and your child will have access to this equipment. If families purchase a Chromebook it will mean that access for every student is enhanced and school hardware can be shared across the school more evenly.
To use this device for learning at our school, you need to have the management console. Without the console teachers are unable to monitor individual students work which is a very important for the teaching and learning programme within the classroom. The installation of the management console is provided by the Board of Trustees as it is fundamental to the learning process. When you return the signed BYOD agreement you will be provided with a date for the management console to be loaded onto the device. Once the management console is loaded your child is able to bring their Chromebook to school each day.
We have been liaising with our local Intermediates and know they are also using Chromebooks in their teaching and learning programmes. Familiarity with this device will be beneficial for your child’s Intermediate experience not only for navigating the device but also due to the digital literacy and digital citizenship competencies developed when using any device online. When leaving the school students need to arrange to have the management console removed from their device so that it can be used at another school.
We are building towards a greater integration of ICT into learning, this does not mean though that your child will be fixed to a screen. Beliefs about lesson design and what good teaching and learning is will still be applied by teachers, just as it always has been. We know that students learn best when learning is broken into small chunks and regular breaks or transitions to other tasks are provided. In the time ICT will be being used, students will be learning in a variety of contexts, which will break up their screen time even when technologies are being used. Even in the most digital of classes, sustained screen time is minimal as students stop to think, move around the classroom to check in with others, have discussions with the teacher, move to a ‘hands on’ task or are expected to stop and move onto another task. Teachers will be alert to the need to ensure that long sustained periods of time in front of a screen do not occur. Families may also wish to consider reducing screen time at home.
Touch typing will not be an explicitly taught skill in the teaching day, however typing apps and websites will be available for students to use during choice time in the school day or for homework. As outlined in the previous question students will not be typing for long sustained periods of time as the school day is broken into chunks and the learning task themselves are intermittent. Students will be thinking and pausing as they write as well as having discussions and collaborating with others. Students will not be using the Chromebooks to type up text they are copying from somewhere else, so a fast typing speed is not required to be successful. The more students do small activities that involve typing the more their ability to type develops. It is also important to consider that when your child enters the workforce it is highly likely that typing will no longer be a required skill of the job.
Just as typing and screen time is intermittent so is the time children spend working in just one spot or focused on just one task for long periods of time. Our Board some time ago purchased ergonomically designed chairs which support posture so our students are able to use these when sitting at desks. They also sit on the floor, move about inside the classroom as well as being given many opportunities to be outside and active throughout the school day. Along with our 1:1 journey we are also beginning a flexible learning spaces journey. This will see us exploring a range of different furniture options in our rooms so that with our ‘best tool for the job’ mentality with devices, we can also have a ‘best working space for the task’ mentality with desks, couches, bean bags, tall cafe style tables and many other furniture and layout ideas being trialled. Desks and chairs will be available for students.
Please contact your insurance company to arrange policy cover for the device at school. When your child is not in class a locked cupboard or room will be provided for your child to secure their device in if they choose.