Unionville Montessori School has a consistent, yet evolving focus on exemplary instruction and student achievement.
In recent times we have seen a fundamental paradigm shift in learning, the use of technology programme as an instrument for curriculum delivery. One of the emerging trends has been the introduction of advanced technological resources within the classroom. UMS has embraced this idea and is proactively taking a measured approach towards incorporating innovative methods of learning, changing the face of the classroom environment. Our mandate, “Excellence in Education,” is the driving force behind this initiative. Education must be forward-leaning, recognizing that the “real world” for which students are being prepared is dynamic, with exponential changes especially in technology. Innovation is at the forefront of our priorities, in order to give your child the necessary skills to grow as a lifelong learner. As part of our ‘Blueprint for the Future’, UMS recognizes the importance of providing state of the art learning resources to all students. In the past five years, UMS has embarked on a technological makeover, bringing together a collection of tools and resources focused on giving our students an academic advantage. More specifically we have completely overhauled our existing network infrastructure to a more robust and optimal cross campus network design. Interactive SMART Boards have been implemented into classrooms introducing students to a virtualized classroom environment is part of our technology programme.
Connecting The Curriculum
iPads are used as an extension tool to enhance the current curriculum.
iPads allow students to go above and beyond what is in the classroom. The iPad gives students the opportunity to use immediate resources/tools to access information without having to leave their classroom. It allows teachers to differentiate their teaching with cutting edge technology that supports the various learning styles of our students. It is a tool that allows for a more student centered learning approach, students are responsible for their own learning. By allowing students to actively participate in their own learning, they can engage in open-ended construction of knowledge. This type of project-based learning facilitates increased student engagement and therefore creates opportunities for higher education attainment with our current curriculum. More importantly, it provides the opportunity for students to have an individualized program, following the curriculum expectations, while using each student’s strength and supporting their weaknesses.
Preparing For the Future
A school’s education program must be fluid, ready to shift and change to ensure that students have the knowledge and skills of today and tomorrow.
The world is in motion, and the information that is true or valuable today could be obsolete tomorrow. Students must be prepared with the ability to learn, critically evaluate, and apply new concepts that come their way. In a society that is becoming increasingly reliant on technology, it is important for teachers to develop new forms of curriculum that students can easily relate to. Hands on applications where information is relayed quickly and accurately is a resource that will make learning fun and interactive. The iPad is a personal learning studio. It can be a science lab, literacy tool, research station, history archive, language lab, art canvas, music studio, video editing suite, and library. It acts as a multi purpose device for functions including:
A Guided Approach
Students are guided to become self-cognizant, life-long learners prepared not just for today’s world but equipped to continue learning for whatever the future holds.
Nowadays, tablet devices are being used extensively at the high school level. These mediums are being coupled with the use of online learning management systems giving faculty and students the ability to access in-class resources from anywhere, at any time via the World Wide Web. UMS has taken a similar approach and has developed a Virtual Learning Center giving our students the ability to access the classroom in a controlled online environment. Our goal is to ensure students have a guided and structured approach with regard to technology, ensuring they understand the scope of the virtual society they are a part of. UMS’s approach to technology empowers students, creating life-long learners who are prepared for both the modern world and the future.
“Another study centered on an iPad game, Motion Math, has shown that the iPad can help with fundamental math skills. Fifth graders who regularly played the game for 20 minutes per day over a five-day period increased their test scores by 15% on average”
By Christina Bonnington, CNN.COM
iPads are expanding the learning experience both inside and outside the classroom.
Students are introduced to the iPad program in a multi-faceted manner:
A portion of the curriculum has been developed by the faculty to be instructed using iPads. Class sets will be available to students as per the course of study.
At the beginning of the school year, each student is assigned his/her own personal iPad. This will be used during class and as a supplemental learning resource to enhance the curriculum. This in affect will create a bridge for students as they enter secondary education. UMS has developed a strict usage policy to ensure appropriate use while in the school and at home. This will ensure that the students will receive the maximum educational benefit of our program.