Glenwood Springs students making a high-tech high school | PostIndependent.com

Glenwood Springs students making a high-tech high school

John Gardner
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Kelley Cox Post Independent
ALL |

GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” Paul Freeman considers himself a “digital immigrant” who’s been transplanted into the current world of technology.

That’s what the Glenwood Springs High School principal told a group of teachers and parents Friday at GSHS.

“I feel like I’ve been forcibly placed on a ship and sent to the digital age,” Freeman said.

Freeman and the rest of the faculty and students are lucky to have the Technology Empowers Everyone (T.E.E.) Team. Fittingly, the T.E.E. Team of junior Stephanie Grange and senior William Hendricks displayed a poster with the likeness of Mr. T, saying, “I pity the fool who doesn’t jump into his education.”

And that’s the message of the T.E.E. Team: to embrace available technology at the school to enhance the teaching and learning process.

“It’s a partnership with the Partnering for Success program,” Hendricks said. “We are getting into a new age of technology, and we want to show the teachers how they can use the technology to improve teaching but also to improve the learning ability of the students.”

Grange and Hendricks presented their outline for the program to about 40 GSHS staff and parents in the cafeteria of the newly remodeled GSHS. The detailed presentation illustrated how these two plan on remodeling the learning process at GSHS and to bring it into a more modern era.

“What they’ve done is something that graduate-level students do in an MBA program,” said Kirsten McDaniel, Computers 4 Kids executive director. “They’ve really created a program all on their own that helps implement the usage of technology in the school.”

Partnering for Success is a program developed through local nonprofit Computers 4 Kids and the Roaring Fork School District.

McDaniel, along with GSHS technology specialist Mary Lamb and GSHS media specialist Jenna Cook, advised the students for the program, but the work was all done by Hendricks and Grange. The two began with their strategic plan at the beginning of the current school year and put about 12 hours, outside of school and other activities, into the project, according Hendricks. The T.E.E. Program is now offered to other students for credit.

“We will be offering this as a course so they can implement the use of technology at the school and be able to recognize the tools that work best for them,” Lamb said.

The program is designed to empower students and teachers to use available technology ” like the Internet ” to its full potential so they can get the most out of their education. Renovations of GSHS included a new library complete with a media center and a new computer lab equipped to aid teachers with teaching and students with learning.

Grange gave several examples of how the program could be used, such as for math students to study special effects in movies by understanding how the effects are created. Grange said artists could create virtual art galleries online so people from around the globe could see their work. Or a history class could utilize available technology to track family histories and further understand the reason their ancestors immigrated to America.

“Seventy-five percent of teachers were interested in participating in a program like this,” Grange said. “(The program) was a big learning experience.”

Grange and Hendricks will present the program at a library conference in Grand Junction in February with the hope that other schools around the state will pick up on what these GSHS students are throwing down.

At least for the time being, GSHS is taking full advantage of the program.

“I’m so excited,” Freeman said. “It’s a different level of education.”

Utilizing technology to completely experience learning ” the T.E.E. Team has spoken.

Contact John Gardner: 384-9114

jgardner@postindependent.com

Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO


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