Desert Meadows School’s vision is to have all students reach their academic and social potentials, with technology serving as a catalyst to learning. And, to reach that goal, the school has launched a number of technology initiatives throughout its classrooms.
Meadows has created a blended learning environment where technology is used along with traditional learning strategies to keep students fully engaged. Teachers use Google Classroom to build assignments, ask questions, and create discussions for their students to access online. This also allows them to create a “flipped classroom” where students review the lesson online at home and complete projects and exercises in class with their peers. Desert Meadows students take notes digitally with Chromebooks and have access to safe email accounts. Middle school students use digital portfolios to set goals and show academic growth to their families.
The blended learning model complements the Laveen Elementary School District’s curriculum which is available online, as well as in traditional textbooks. All district and state assessments are taken online using Chromebooks.
For the 2018/2019 school year, we are introducing two exciting changes to our program. In Kindergarten through 5th grade, we will have a full time technology integration teacher who will travel to classrooms and work with homeroom teachers to integrate computer science and coding instruction into daily lessons. At Desert Meadows, technology is not only found in the core academic areas, but has been integrated in special area classes as well. In grades 6-8, our students will have a variety of computer science and coding electives to choose from. Additionally, iPads are used in music and art, and there are coding and media clubs that further promote the use of technology.
Our teachers and staff have seen several positive changes in our students as we have increased the integration of technology in our classrooms. As with all Laveen schools, Desert Meadows has had a 1:1 student to computing device ratio for the last several years. All Desert Meadows returning teachers have had professional development in Code.Org curriculum and many are Level 1 or Level 2 Google certified educators.
We are excited about the future of computer science and coding at Desert Meadows and look forward to working with your child to ensure they reach their full academic and social potential.