Arvin Ross, iSchool Initiative Director of Product Development
CAMILLA, GA (WALB) -
Teachers are getting tech savvy. South Georgia educators got trained today on using iPads and other devices to expand creativity in the classroom.
The iSchool Initiative is on a six month tour across the U.S. training teachers to use technology in the classroom to bridge the technological gap between students and teachers. This mobile classroom sits outside the Southwest Georgia RESA Professional Learning center with devices worth tens of thousands of dollars inside. Teachers from fifteen school systems are learning to use them in their classrooms.
"We opened up with a keynote talking about awakening your creative genius really allowing the teachers to tap into a side of them that they may have never tapped into before with education," said Arvin Ross with iSchool Initiative.
Ross instructs teachers how to use Google apps, iPads and other devices to become more organized and paperless in the classrooms.
"Thinking, creativity begins to increase exponentially and you're able to do things inside and outside the classroom that you're not normally able to do with just four walls and desk," said Ross.
Ross says some teachers worry the devices will replace their jobs.
"There's always going to be a need for that person in the classroom to whose facilitating the teaching learning process and an iPad doesn't do that," said Ross.
Ross says classrooms across the country that use these devices have increased test scores and retention rates. This interactive whiteboard comes with speakers and is a dual touch screen so that both students and teachers can work on a problem at the same time. This collaborative interactive table has hundreds of activities in every subject for students of all ages. RESA Directors say it's important for school systems to keep up with technology.
" It's the only way we're going to keep our students interest, we can't just sit and lecture to these students," said Kelly Young, Director of Professional Learning at Southwest Ga RESA.
Young says several schools in the region have days designated for students to bring their own electronic devices to school. iSchool Initiative employees are full time Kennesaw state students who have visited 33 states so far during their tour training approximately 120 thousand educators.The iSchool Initiative started three years ago and has also trained in Tanzania, Finland, and Spain.