Mt. Vernon finally goes online

Story by: Dakota Fisher, News Editor
Photos by: Dakota Fisher, News Editor

MV goes online

To kick off the 2015-2016 school year, students have gone through the transition into the brand new 1:1 program.

Students K-5 are using Apple iPads while in school, however, they are not permitted to take them home. Middle and high school students were assigned Google Chromebooks which can be taken home.

According to new superintendent Dr. Shane Robbins,the goal of this new and revolutionary program is to “motivate, engage, and challenge students to learn 21st century skills.” Along with this new program, MVCSC has adopted the Edmentum curriculum. The Edmentum curriculum strives to provide over 8,000 school districts with an adapted 21st century learning style.

Teachers will also learn to adapt to this new learning environment and will be trained on how to effectively implement them into the classroom.

“The Chromebooks will be a great resource to have this year,” said Betsy McCleery, 10.

“I really think that they will help students learn valuable skills and how to live in the modern world.”

Technology is ever growing, so exposing young learners to the wonders of technological education from such a young age can really help aid them in the future. With the new curriculum, students will have a modern learning environment while still meeting all of the basic educational needs. Students will have a “blended” learning environment, meaning there will still be books, paper and pencils in the classroom. MVCSC does, however, intend to get rid of the textbooks entirely in the future and have a completely digital classroom.

“Research shows that students are learning more with the application of new technology that enables a greater amount of collaborative instruction, opens the doors of communication, and takes education beyond the classroom and into the community as a whole, ” said Dr. Shane Robbins

Not only can this new technology help in the traditional classroom, but also it can make the fine arts and foreign language classes more interactive by using applications like Sound Trap, which enable students to compose their own music, digitally.  

With apps like Garageband or Duolingo, students are exposed to a whole new realm of learning, making classes more entertaining, keeping students better engaged and eager to learn. Garageband is an app on the Apple store that turns your device into a  full featured recording studio giving students the ability to make their own music on the go. Duolingo is an application that helps students learn over 20 different languages including French, Spanish, and Ukrainian. Electronic learning has a huge impact on the way this generation, and generations to come, will influence society.

French teacher, Mr. Freeman, has been working this year with the new mv goes online 21:1 program by having an almost completely online class using a program called Plato. Plato is a part of the Edmentum curriculum and teaches students French using powerpoints and recorded commentary as well as conducting quizzes at the end of each lesson to check the student’s progress.

“The new 1:1 program makes things snappier. Students are far more efficient,” said MVHS Physics teacher, Mr. Everett.

In physics, students utilize this new technology in many different ways, including a flipped classroom, and having access to the online textbook, which eliminates the need for physical textbooks.

While there are many positive advantages to this new program, there have also been several complications. Students have had issues logging onto the wifi. The technology department has been working very hard around the clock to try to get this complication fixed and the new computers working well for students.

Dr. Robbins assured both students and parents that the new program will soon be running seamlessly, “As with anything new we attempt to accomplish, we will learn from our mistakes and use the knowledge to improve our practices.”

This new program not only empowers students, but it also helps prepare them for the workforce, and provides individualized learning. 1:1 helps students learn at their own pace and gives students the opportunity to take control of their education.

“I will end with this,” Dr. Robbins said. “From 1927-1941 Gutzon Borglum and 400 workers sculpted Mt. Rushmore.  A 60 foot high representation of four U.S. Presidents.  It was done utilizing tools, hard work, and creativity.  In our 1:1 computing environment, the device is only a tool that will allow for greater levels of creativity relevant in today’s society.”