Schools win ‘kid magnet’ interactive whiteboards

At Notre Dame High School in Burlington, students; Principal Ron Glasgow, back; and Hy-Vee representatives pose with a SMART Board that will be used in math teacher Clair Bohlen’s classroom.

By Celine Klosterman

Several Catholic schools in the Davenport Diocese recently received a $1,500 SMART Board interactive whiteboard as part of Hy-Vee’s SMART Points promotion.

Keokuk Catholic Schools in Keokuk, St. James School in Washington, Notre Dame High School in Burlington, St. Paul the Apostle School in Davenport, Holy Trinity Catholic Elementary in West Point and the St. Ambrose University Children’s Campus in Davenport were among 200 Midwest schools that won the boards, said Larry Ballard, Hy-Vee public relations specialist.

During Hy-Vee’s Sept. 1 to Nov. 30 promotion, shoppers who purchased Procter & Gamble and Sara Lee products at Hy-Vee earned points that could be designated to the schools of their choice. Winning schools reached the highest average points score in their region.

Also, a student at each school who had the most points designated on his or her behalf received a MacBook computer.

The SMART Board interactive whiteboard functions as an oversized touch-sensitive computer display. Using a special pen, a finger or virtually any object, users can control computer applications, write notes, pull up charts and images, erase or rearrange objects on screen, search the Internet, play videos and save work.

The board comes with special SMART Notebook software that enables users to create customized lessons, presentations and learning activities and save them for future use.

“After winning the Smart Board, we have an opportunity to provide more teaching/learning technology to additional classrooms,” said Sharon Kokemuller, assistant principal at Keokuk Catholic Schools. In the fall, the preschool- to fifth-grade school purchased two Mimio brand interactive systems, with projectors, to use with whiteboards in classrooms.

“The staff and students were very excited to add another technology component to our classrooms to meet the needs of our ever-growing technological society.”

At St. Ambrose University’s Children’s Campus, about 48 children from three preschool classrooms will have the opportunity to use the SMART Board, said Director Debra Brownson.

Four- and 5-year-olds will be able to do guided Internet research, such as studying different types of evergreens. Many applications are available for young children, and Brownson is certain the Children’s Campus will continue discovering interactive uses for the technology.

The campus also anticipates using it for staff training and for the Parents’ Council.

“We are so thrilled and excited to receive our new SMART Board,” Brownson said.

At St. Paul the Apostle, teachers who’d like to have the board in their classroom will submit their names for a drawing, said Principal Julie Delaney. Teachers have been using a SMART Board won last year, which is in the school’s media center, for review games, student presentations, and viewing and creating multimedia.

The interactive whiteboards increase student engagement, are great for demonstrations, accommodate different learning styles, enable one-computer classrooms to make the most of limited computer access, and are “a kid magnet,” she said.

MacBook winners

Notre Dame Schools, Tatyana DelPreore, kindergarten; Keokuk Catholic Schools, Sydney Ruhl, third grade; Holy Trinity Catholic Elementary, Allison Robu, second grade; St. Paul the Apostle, parent Kevin Murphy, who will present the computer to his children Madeline, second grade, and Brian, first grade; St. Ambrose Children’s Campus, Lane family.

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