After just one year of using the ActivPanel in their classrooms, Orealia Kelly Primary School teachers Jerresia Hughes, Shanelle Hodge Charles, and Krystie Permuy have noticed a major impact on the education experience. “We’re already seeing the benefits in the classroom,” shared Hodge Charles, a fourth-grade teacher. Not only is technology improving student outcomes and supporting differentiated learning, it’s lightening teachers’ workload.
In Jerresia Hughes’s kindergarten class, the ActivPanel has enhanced comprehension and enlivened classes for her young students. “It enriches the curriculum, and makes a typical lesson more interesting, fun, and very interactive,” she said. With the large display, it’s easy for students anywhere in the room to clearly see the numbers, letters, and shapes she shows. Students also use the panel for hands-on activities that reinforce what they’re learning.
In the upper primary grades, students do more independent and small group work, and the panel has become an essential tool that keeps students focused and helps teachers see how each student is doing. “When I set students to do different tasks or work in groups, I can see how the assignment is progressing and who I need to assist,” explained Hodge Charles. Knowing which of her fourth-grade students are struggling with different concepts allows her to provide specialized support based on individual needs.
The interactive flat panel also makes group work more collaborative. During a discussion, sixth-grade teacher Permuy types up her students’ comments and answers, immediately displaying them on the panel. She also enhances lessons on the fly by pulling images from the internet onto the panel and using the annotate tool to draw on them. “It’s not just a picture, but a picture with labels the students gave me,” she said. Whether its notes or images, she can quickly save classwork and share it with her students to use when studying on their own or bring the files up in class on another day.
Beyond the rewards of seeing students achieve their learning goals, the ActivPanel is improving teachers’ day-to-day tasks, too, especially when it comes to lesson preparation. Instead of relying on the paper-and-pencil methods they used before, teachers are now accessing and adapting pre-planned digital resources or creating all new lessons that can easily be saved on their computers or the panel. Teachers also integrate games, quizzes, and other activities to make lessons more engaging and interactive. “I just pull up my PowerPoints, activities, games—all my manipulatives. It’s all in one area,” said Hodge Charles.
The ActivPanel is also having a significant impact on job satisfaction for the teachers at Orealia Kelley Primary School.
Technology like this has made teaching better, more interesting, more funKrystie Permuy
said Permuy, echoing a sentiment shared by her fellow teachers. “I look forward to using the panel every day. Without it, every day wouldn’t be such a good day.”