After two years of research spearheaded by a Learning and Teaching Technologies (LTT) group into notebook programmes worldwide, the school determined in 2006 that students from Gr.5 and up requires a laptop to be able to participate fully in the teaching and learning required for the 21st Century. Prep to Gr.4 students continue to have their technology integrated lessons using shared laptop carts.
During the implementation period, and over subsequent years, all stakeholders including Board members, IT, LTT, administrators, teachers, students, CISPA parents and vendors have been actively involved in making decisions for the 1:1 programme.
Due to the young age and the weight of student school bags, CDNIS parents have requested the implementation of a phased-in model for Gr.5 and 6 students. In the model, students’ laptops are kept in the locked classroom cabinets. Students spend time to learn about responsibilities and security around using laptops. Learning engagements are designed to reinforce the use of laptops for teaching and learning these skills. During these years, Gr.5 students are allowed to bring their laptops home on long holidays, while Gr.6 students are allowed to bring their laptops home on weekdays starting around October when homework is assigned on the computers. All Gr.5/6 students are set up as standard users, while school IT team, teachers and parents are given administrative rights to help manage the laptops for them.
We have found that a single platform model serves our community best, both from a teaching and learning perspective. By limiting the platform and determining course specific software, we can better serve the needs of students and teachers. When teachers and students have access to the same applications and hardware, they can manage coursework more effectively and more efficiently. Having the same tools also increases the opportunities for collaboration – a significant component of education today.
There are three reasons why we continue to choose to work with Apple on this initiative:
- CDNIS has developed a solid relationship with Apple over 15 years that allows us to leverage their wealth of experience in the education sector.
- In our experience, Apple has unparalleled expertise providing technology inspired and learner-friendly solutions for classrooms.
- and seamless integration of cloud and mobile technologies is well supported within the Apple infrastructures
We believe the 13-inch MacBook is the model that best serves our overall needs. With 8GB of RAM and at least 256GB of hard disk memory, the MacBook is ideal as it provides technical flexibility, portability for students and is affordably priced. MacBook Air devices have been introduced where practicable. Further research on notebooks and 1:1 programmes can be obtained from the following sites:
- One-to-one computing: literature review
- 1:1 Laptop Programs: Shifting the Way Students Learn | Edutopia