Lake Washington School District is a nationally recognized leader in using technology in the classroom and has been for the last two decades. The district provides teachers with everything they need to be successful. That includes state of the art equipment and as much professional development as possible.
Today’s students are different. They have lived with digital technology from a very early age. Technology is a natural part of how they live every day. To engage these “digital natives” in learning, teachers must use technology as an integral part of their teaching strategies. Integrating technology into every subject enhances teaching, leading to greater learning success.
In this district, the computer center and instructional technology work together in the same department. The advantage is that curriculum needs drive the systems that are in place to support both teachers and students. The computer center supports and maintains the infrastructure, such as the networks and computers. The instructional technology group works with the curriculum content teams to provide a seamless approach to delivering that content, using appropriate technology. They provide teachers the tools and training needed that connect technology with learning.
District technology priorities include equipping staff and students with up-to-date, capable computers, providing access to fiber networks and to video and data networks. A standard classroom in Lake Washington School District is well equipped. You can expect to find the following equipment:
- a teacher workstation
- a computer with a DVD drive dedicated to a ceiling mounted LCD projector
- a digital document camera
- a VCR
- speaker system
- a mounted ACTIVboard (an interactive whiteboard)
- interactive feedback ACTIVote devices
As of fall 2012 all elementary schools have access to carts of netbooks at a ratio of 3:1 (grades K-2) or 2:1 (grades 3-5). During the 2012-2013 school year we will roll out 1:1 in grades 6-12 so that by early 2013, all students will be assigned a laptop for home and school use.
The instructional technology group provides many resources for teachers to use this equipment effectively. An internal internet site is stocked with maps, flipcharts, and lessons. Teachers can project these materials on the ACTIVboard. As the teacher and students work with these materials, working out problems or writing answers, the teacher can save the work to the computer, bringing it back for reference at any time.