|E 3||Enable, Enhance and Engage|
|SAMR||Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, Redefinition|
Multiple Choice Question
1) How is this programme infused in my child’s lessons?
Lessons are designed, following the SAMR model, to allow the computing device to enhance the understanding and learning for the pupil. Activities are created that allow pupils to see the application of subject matter in real-life situations, and give them ample opportunities to be independent learners and be good team players. Also, this programme allows pupils to learn outside classrooms and see the relevance of the content.
2) Will the majority of my child’s homework be online?
We are working in a blended mode. Projects and exercises which consists of MCQs and Fill-in-the-blanks, will mostly be in electronic mode. This allows for instant feedback and pupils do not need to wait to know if their answers are correct. Exercises in open-ended format, such as Math problem sums, compositions and Science open-ended questions, will still be offline and written.
3) How will my child benefit from this programme?
The main benefit that a pupil can experience in this programme is their change in the attitude for learning. They will know what to do should they encounter subject matter that they do not understand, be willing to explore and search for answers, and be in the habit to analyse the content and hypothesise, as well as conclude new meaning derived from content that they dug up. In essence, they begin to take ownership of their learning.
4) Will there be experienced teachers to guide them in this programme?
The school is deploying its experienced teachers to teach in this programme. There will be plenty of 2-way communication between those teachers and parents.
5) Which subjects will this programme be infused in?
This programme will be infused in English, Math, Science and Chinese classes. Malay and Tamil classes will not be in this program in 2014.
6) How are the lessons in this programme different from the lessons outside it?
Curriculum and syllabus wise, it’s exactly the same. However what’s different is that we are trying to move a step up from our current pedagogy. We want to move the engagement level in class up a notch, and we feel that a computing device will provide plenty of opportunities for that. Also, in the spirit of SDL and CoL, the affordances of computing devices will allow it easily. It is not saying that without this computing device, lessons in class will be boring and didatic. Rather it is that we can move up a notch from where we are with it, make learning more efficient and effective.
What we are doing in classes now is great still, with pupils learning through activities. However, it can be further enhanced with the software and hardware out there. The benefit of having technology in the classroom is that the activities that we have now can be carried out even more efficiently, effectively and reach out to a greater audience. Pupils can search for information, talk to experts located far away, and even learn with simulations to see if their hypothesis comes true or not. On top of this, collaboration is made more convenient , with the myriad of software out there that easily allow anyone to critique on a piece of work, edit a group document, share information with each other. We still do all these in our classrooms, it’s just that now, we made it easier for pupils and teachers to do it. With the ease of use, pupils can concentrate on their independent learning and collaboration, getting down to the core business of learning. Ultimately, they will be more engaged in class.
7) Will written work be completely taken away?
Written work will never disappear. Our exams are all still in written form, pupils still need to know how to write. There will still be homework and classwork in written form.
8) Are there any ways to ensure my child is not distracted by games or other apps during lesson time?
We are currently researching the type of classroom management system that we can deploy in these classrooms. This software will allow teachers to monitor every pupil’s screen from the teacher’s iPad, and limit the pupil’s web and app access if it needs be.
On top of this, teachers will be walking around the classroom a lot to observe and facilitate. Pupils will also be the additional pair of eyes to check on errant pupils.
9) Will the lessons entirely conducted via computing devices or is it a combination of books and digital learning?
It is definitely a combination of books, worksheets and digital tools. The school is mindful that we do not force the use of computing device in any lesson. Instead, we implement the use of iPad around the lessons, to engage pupils and make learning more impactful and useful.