IMPORTANT: Please DO NOT attempt to fix classroom AV issues by yourself. Some of the equipment is still covered under warranty and will be voided if the wiring or equipment has been tampered with. Please use the Technology Work Request to report any issues with your system.
In David Mongomery’s 5th grade classroom, students are learning about scientific methods in an entirely new way. Students perform a simulation of a clinical trial and analyze data through a hands on experiment in Google Classroom, a blended learning platform for schools that aims to simplify creating, distributing and grading assignments in a paperless way. It was introduced as a feature of Google Apps for Education following its public release on August 12, 2014.
Google Classroom ties Google's many services together to help educational institutions go to a paperless, more collaborative system. Mr. Montgomery is able to provide almost all of his lesson content in one simple online location. Mr. Montgomery enjoys having the ability to embed videos as part of assignments and using the videos to take notes in a Google Doc that students can submit to him electronically. He also thinks the ability to create a share out an assignment has been really beneficial. “Another great benefit has been the ability to let students access assignments from home if they were absent or had to leave a lesson early. I have already had a few students successfully do this for my science class and for my reading class (I use Google Classroom for this as well)” says Montgomery.
What’s best is that although East Lansing isn’t a Google school, he & his students already have access to Google account through ELPS as an option.
“I’ve heard about and been interested in Google Classroom for a while as a result of discussions with other teachers at tech PDs. While I was a little unsure when I first started it, I decided this year to jump in and see how it worked. I’ve let the students know that I am new to using it and that I may make mistakes. As a result, I’ve been really pleased with how it has started.” says Montgomery. He admits that while his introduction of Google Classroom has required a lot of explicit instruction and help to begin with, he’s already seeing students become more proficient with the use of the classroom technology and with the way they complete their assignments. At the same time he still allows students to write out assignments if they feel more comfortable working with paper and pencil.
A clinical trial is a research study in which one or more human subjects are prospectively assigned to one or more interventions (in this case, lemonade) which may include placebo or other control to evaluate the effects of those interventions on health-related biomedical or behavioral outcomes. For the clinical trial activity, he provides students a vocabulary resource that they can refer back to throughout the lesson if they need a refresher. It includes terms like clinical trial, medicine, control group, placebo and patient.
For the experiment, students are initially given a glass of lemonade to try that represented a headache. The second glass they receive was either a “medicine” or “placebo.” Students had to identify if their 2nd drink tasted better, the same or worse than their first glass of lemonade. If they thought it tasted better, their “headache” went away. If they thought it tasted the same, their “headache” remained. If they thought it tasted worse, their “headache” went away, but they has side effects.
As each student performs their clinical trial, the class collects data from their experiment and each student individually records the class data on a Google Doc/Spreadsheet. Students then highlight these fields containing data and with a simple click of a button, turn it into a chart allowing them to visualize their data results. With the collected data they can compare, contrast, analyze and synthesize information determining scientific conclusions about multiple observations and the results. They also practice properly labeling the title and horizontal/vertical axis.
Mr. Montgomery then brought his students back to their text to go over the criteria used for determining whether a medicine is effective or ineffective. Did it work? Was it safe? Were there a lot of people who had side effects? After connecting it with the procedures they used in class, Mr. Montgomery asked them to respond to a question that required them to connect their procedures to one or more of the different methods they talked about in the text. For that, he provides a link for his students to a Padlet wall where they shared their personal interpretations to an analysis question on a public wall with one another.
Parents can request to have a PowerSchool Parent Portal created on their behalf through the district website. Please direct parents to the following form:
> Go to www.elps.us > Select PARENTS > Select PowerSchool: Request a Parent Portal
Once the request has been reviewed and processed the parent will receive account information by email from Technology & Media Services.
New topics are available on the PD Weebly. Take a look by going to www.elps.us > STAFF > East Lansing PD Weebly > PD Topics. Want to know more than what you see? We offer technology professional development all year long before school, after school, during teacher prep, over remote desktop and in group settings. A PD request form is available on the PD Weebly homepage and below in the PD Opportunities section.
The steps below will walk you through how to log into Think Central for the first time. After that, please use your username and password for the last two steps.
The District libraries are happy to announce we now have loaner devices available for staff members. Each building in the district has a minimum of 5 laptops for loan, and K-5 schools have 5 iPads as well. These devices are for teacher use, and can be checked out from the library. Devices can be used for onsite training, conferences, staff meetings, or other curricular needs. Please see your building librarian for more information.
Technology professional development is available all day, every day. If you would like to receive 1:1 training on your prep (in person or over remote desktop), before school, after school or a group training, please submit a technology work request or email Kali Root Stevens at firstname.lastname@example.org.