Integrating Technology in Schools - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Integrating Technology in Schools

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BILLINGS -

Many schools in the area are integrating technology into their classrooms and it's changing the way kids learn. Whether it's through an iPad, Smartboard, or an online class, the technological advances in schools are helping kids in K-12.

"It allows the teacher to have more real time, insight into how each child is doing," says Tom Wardess, a donor for the Interactive Inquiry Project through the Billings Public Schools Education Foundation.

"Mrs. Niemeyer is able to know exactly where the student is in that moment on the material that they just learned so that if they need to stop and re-teach before moving on, they have that opportunity," says Krista Hertz, Executive Director for Billings Public Schools Education Foundation.

Now, three more first grade teachers will integrate iPads into their curriculum, allowing the teacher to get feedback right away on how each student is understanding the material. It's similar to how the Smartboard and Student Response clicker works at Lockwood Schools.

"We have the ability to create unique lessons that are individualized to our particular students," says Cindy Gobb, fourth grade teacher at Lockwood Schools.

Also at Lockwood Schools, students who are well ahead of their grade level are able to take online classes in higher grade levels to keep them learning, like three 8th graders are at Eileen Johnson Middle School in Lockwood, who are taking a sophomore level geometry class online.

"It helps me stay at my own pace and I don't have to stay with the rest of my grade," says Ryan Hinrichs, an 8th grader at Eileen Johnson Middle School.

The online classes are through Montana Digital Academy that offers AP classes and new challenges.

"It also allows students to take different foreign languages like Mandarin Chinese, or Spanish, or French, in schools that might not have that availability," says Kelly Kinsey, Assistant Principal of Eileen Johnson Middle School.

Through grants and technology levies, schools are able to integrate the various forms of technology into their every day curriculum.