Toronto's Greenwood College School Opts for All-Digital Curriculum: Thomson Gale Delivers 100% of Course-Work to the Wireless-Enabled Students, Faculty and Administrators
Martin, John, District Administration
When a new school commits to experiential learning and technology to create a truly unique instructional environment--like Toronto's Greenwood College School (www.greenwoodcollege. com) when it opened its doors in 2002--the process "is very much an evolution," says Allan Hardy, Vice Principal of Curriculum. "Just in terms of technology, at first we thought that we might create a paperless environment, which was only one part of the rationale for our 'digital curriculum,' but we've learned that the students want hard copy to read and study. Though the students and faculty all have wireless-enabled laptops, we also have a lot of printers."
But the wireless environment at Greenwood College School (grades 7-12) is not going unused thanks to the school's 100-percent digital curriculum. Having no physical library on the premises, Greenwood College utilizes Web-enabled content resources from Thomson Gale (www.galeschools. com) within the Blackboard course management system (www. blackboard.com). Instruction is facilitated by using SMART boards in each classroom.
Greenwood College puts its data where its philosophy is: The independent school is not just wireless with a virtual library, Hardy says, but "all digital" in curriculum as well. "We use Blackboard for every course and every student," he says, "and as a result, our students are online all the time. Which, of course, has its upside but also can provide distractions. Today's technology affords students many tools both to enhance their learning experience, and to express themselves; our faculty are specially trained to use educational technology to empower our students."
The underlying power of the digital curriculum is delivered via Blackboard but uses the resources of Thomson Gale, a world-leading provider of print, electronic and Web-enabled K-12 content. "Their virtual library offers our students highly specialized access to electronic books, encyclopedias, journals and indices," says Hardy. …