For the past two years, our current 8th Graders have enjoyed the use of iPad as part of the Willets Road’s one-to-one computing initiative. This 1-1 initiative is continuing now that the Class of 2019 has arrived at Wheatley. Instead of iPads, however, students have been issued Chromebooks. In preparation for this initiative, 8th Grade teachers were issued their own Chromebooks last spring so that they could participate in hours of professional development and training. When the Chromebooks were issued to students on Tuesday, teachers were able to put them to good use right away!
In Biology, Mrs. Chanin-Bermudez had students working on a project about cells. In small groups, students were assigned a part of the cell to research. The group then incorporated text and media in a short Google Slide presentation on the part of the cell. With their Chromebooks, students were able to simultaneously collaborate on the same presentation at the same time. Once the individual cell part was researched, Mrs. Chanin-Bermudez reconfigured the groups so that a members of each individual cell unit were placed together to form a “cell.” Students shared their individual cell part with each other in order to create a larger presentation on the cell as a whole. Students were then asked to propose questions that Mrs. Chanin-Bermudez should include on the next test. The real-time collaboration and the opportunity to share among a group and walk away from the class with a student-created overview of the cell made for a powerful lesson.