In collaboration with HP and Microsoft’s Reinvent the Classroom Initiative, Digital Promise Global is launching two new programs that celebrate teachers and schools who demonstrate powerful teaching and learning with technology.
Powerful use of technology contributes to closing the Digital Learning Gap. Educators who design learning experiences that are personal and accessible, authentic and challenging, collaborative and connected, and inquisitive and reflective create deeper, more meaningful learning experiences for their students. This spring, we announced the inaugural cohort of the HP Teaching Fellows. Now, we are pleased to present the first HP Spotlight School, William F. Halloran School No. 22 in Elizabeth Public Schools, New Jersey.
The HP Spotlight Schools program recognizes schools that are committed to powerful learning experiences for all students, and are committed to helping other schools do the same. HP Spotlight Schools will open their doors to visitors so that other district leaders and teachers can see powerful learning in action. Visitors will see practical and replicable applications of powerful learning across grade levels and subject areas, including authentic, personally relevant lessons that challenge students and encourage collaboration, inquiry, and student reflection. HP Spotlight Schools are also characterized by a school culture in which risk-taking and instructional innovation are supported by leadership. Visitors can expect to see innovative technology use with HP and Microsoft tools.
Elizabeth Public Schools (EPS) was nominated as a HP Spotlight School district based on their recognized leadership in educational technology. EPS became a member of the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools in 2015, recognized for personalizing instruction through blended learning, putting equity at the center of access to and use of mobile devices to reinforce educational experiences, leveraging web platforms and digital assessments, and creating online platforms for communication. EPS launched their one-to-one computing initiative in 2014, and now all students in grades 2 through 12 have an HP convertible touch laptop and access to the Microsoft 365 suite. District leadership nominated William F. Halloran School No. 22 as the 2019 HP Spotlight School. That nomination was confirmed by HP and Digital Promise, who visited the school, observed classrooms, and interviewed teachers and students.
William F. Halloran School No. 22 is a pre-K to 8 school serving 1,098 students in an urban setting. Curriculum emphasizes interdisciplinary learning and student interest through “RLS Periods,” classes based on the Renzulli Learning approach with topics including gardening, astronomy, and ceramics. Teachers use technology to create authentic and collaborative learning experiences for students. In one class, students used a virtual plant dissection to understand the parts of a plant and their functions prior to planting a garden in the school yard. Students learned about plant germination as well as local wildlife as some of their crops were eaten. Students use Flipgrid to support self-reflection, as well as programs like Minecraft and ReadWorks to receive instant feedback.
In honor of their recognition as the 2019 HP Spotlight School, William F. Halloran is receiving 40 hours of customized professional development on using technology to support Powerful Learning. Additionally, William F. Halloran is receiving an HP Learning Studio, a space where students will leverage cutting-edge technology for student-centered making and design. The space, which was designed with student and teacher input, will include an audio/visual production studio for multimedia content creation, a Mixed Reality studio where students can participate in immersive media experiences, a design studio with equipment to create physical and digital products, and an invention classroom for robotics and physical computing.
You can learn more about William F. Halloran School No. 22 on their HP Spotlight School profile page. Over the next several months, their profile page will document their journey and include virtual tours using 360° videos of classroom instruction.
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