- The Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District in Houston tapped into a $1.2 million bond to ensure it could provide an immersive learning experience for its more than 115,000 students, wrote Becky Cook, the district’s director of instructional technology, in eSchoolNews.
- The district put weeks into research to ensure it had options that supported not just students but teachers, too, and ended up buying a bevy of technology — from interactive displays to software programs that support the displays.
- Now, multiple students can collaborate in real time while using the new boards and software. And educators got the professional learning they needed, through workshops and demonstrations, to ensure they use the new technology effectively.
Schools are tapping into a number of methods to expand how students learn about a subject by using technology such as interactive white boards, as mentioned by eSchoolNews, to virtual reality headsets. But teachers can also turn to hands-on options that don’t require an expensive investment in technology, from taking students outside into gardens for botany lessons to launching beekeeping projects on campus, such as Kellam High School in Virginia Beach, Virginia, chose to do.
Immersing students in history, on the other hand, can be challenging, but educators can tap into other options to bring the past alive. One method teachers can use is a walking tour, while another is inviting people who have first-hand knowledge of a time or place to the classrom, asking them to speak about their experiences through personal narratives, as did Downingtown High School East in Exton, Pennsylvania.
Field trips, which immerse students in an environment outside of their classrooms, also have been shown to benefit academics, from producing higher test scores in the sciences to piquing interest in a variety of subjects.
By expanding a student’s education beyond textbooks, and immersing them more deeply into their learning, educators can help broaden learning and potentially academic achievement as well.