Magazine article District Administration

Keys to a Successful Tablet Implementation: Lessons Learned from a Schoolwide Tablet Initiative

Magazine article District Administration

Keys to a Successful Tablet Implementation: Lessons Learned from a Schoolwide Tablet Initiative

Article excerpt

Holy Redeemer School, a Catholic K8 school in Minnesota, is focused on delivering an educational environment that differentiates the learning experience for each child's specific needs. Part of that initiative involves giving every student, including those in kindergarten, a tablet to engage them in their education. We had heard stories of failed tablet implementations in other schools, and were determined to avoid similar mistakes in our own rollout.

Various aspects of the hardware were important, but to a certain extent a tablet is a tablet. Quite simply, an appropriate tablet solution should enhance, support and simplify teaching and learning. Here is our approach to a successful tablet infrastructure.

Differentiated learning

An appropriate classroom solution will support the shift in instruction from whole class to personalized learning. It must deliver new and existing materials at the right pace and level for each child based on their specific needs.

Maintaining control

Despite the obvious benefit of each child having a tablet, the nature of mobile devices means that teachers can feel they are losing control of the learning, as they can't see what each child is working on.

Teachers should have an easy way to supervise and control student devices. An appropriate management portal should enable the teacher to see a thumbnail sketch on his or her own computer, showing what the children are doing on their tablets. If they are not doing class work, we need the ability to freeze the tablet. Likewise, when a student does something impressive, we should be able to push their screen image to a display or interactive whiteboard for whole-class discussion.

Wireless infrastructure

Bearing in mind the amount of available learning content, and each school's own digital resources, adequate bandwidth is an important consideration during the rollout process. …

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