New Technology Helps Calvert Students Learn

PRINCE FREDERICK, Md. (Nov. 19, 2009)—Over the past two months, Calvert County Public Schools has installed nearly 200 SMART Boards in its classrooms.

While these boards look like a fancier version of the whiteboards that teachers and students have traditionally written on with markers, they are, in fact, connected to a computer and digital projector. By touching or writing on the interactive board with a finger or special pen, teachers and students can control the computer applications, write notes, pull up charts and images, search the Internet, play videos, and save their work.

“Having a SMART Board in my classroom has enabled me to easily show my students how math is used in the real world,” said Keith Powell, a math teacher at Mill Creek Middle School. “It helps to actively engage the students and makes learning much more fun.”

In an effort to increase middle school mathematics achievement, the school system began purchasing the interactive white boards four years ago. Student scores on the statewide math assessment rose, and the initiative was continued.

"Using interactive whiteboards has changed the way teachers teach and students learn,” said Loretta McClellan, teacher at Southern Middle School. “To keep up with the ever-changing technological world, we need to find ways to connect curricular content with technology for students.”

Since 2005, the school system has installed an additional 828 SMART Boards, pushing the number of boards to 871. As a result of the initiative, roughly 70% of the school system’s classrooms now have SMART Boards and projectors.

As budgets tightened due to the economic downturn, many of the boards were paid for by parent-teacher organizations and grant funds.

The boards and projectors come with intuitive, cutting edge software that connects teachers to a full system of course material, tools, and support to help them create high-impact lessons that bring learning to life. And when a teacher creates an engaging and well-designed lesson, that lesson can be shared with other teachers in the school system.

“Using my SMART Board on a daily basis has undoubtedly made my students more active in the learning process,” said McClellan. “I love using my SMART Board and know it makes a huge difference in the classroom."

And Powell agrees. “My students and I now use the board each and every day, and I could not imagine teaching without one!” he said.

Source: Calvert County Public Schools

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