Wayland schools win Apple TRIG best practices grant

students-w-ipads-007Wayland Union Middle School has been awarded a TRIG Best Practices Apple Professional Learning Grant that will support the school in its digital learning environment.

The grant will provide further training to teachers on creating iBooks to help differentiate and support instruction.

“Our teachers have done an outstanding job integrating iPad technology over the past four years,” said Teresa Fulk, Director of Instruction. “Many of our teachers have indicated that they are ready to take technology integration to the next level by creating and customizing digital textbooks in order to meet the needs of our students.

“Additionally, teachers will be supported in instructing students on utilizing student created content in the classroom.

“This grant is similar to a grant that our high school was awarded last year and will continue to build capacity in providing students with individualized instruction and a variety of options to showcase their learning in order to demonstrate proficiency.”

Wayland Union Schools is one of five districts in Michigan to join the federal GoOpen project, which encourages schools to create and share open source, teacher created, and standards based content. The activities of this grant will support Wayland Union Schools in its efforts to lead the way in providing students with access to current, digital content without having the added burden of expensive textbook purchases that quickly become obsolete.

“iBook creation provides teachers with the ability to create and customize an interactive resource, personalized for student learning and engagement,” Cheryl Wilson, District Teacher Technology Consultant. “Teachers can do anything from embedding widgets such as Interactive Images and review to creating a hyperlinked glossary for students to reference. Leveraging the use of customized iBooks puts Wayland students at the forefront of 21st Century learning,”

The teachers in the Science and Social Studies Department will share their learning, strategies, activities, and ideas with the rest of the middle school staff. This practice, along with support from Wilson and Kelly Boston, Middle School Librarian and Technology Specialist, will help the middle school further invest in the School and District Improvement plan, sustain the momentum gained by participation in this grant as well as the 1:1 initiative, and better implement strategies to support students.

Grant activities will begin after the first of the year.

(Photo courtesy of Laurie Zywiczynski)

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