The Gardens School is a leading school in ICT innovation and our e-Learning programmes have been the envy of neighbouring schools for many years. Our Board and staff have worked hard to develop a plan that will ensure we continue to offer exceptional programmes to our students.
To prepare us for our new school environment and to ensure our students are getting leading edge teaching and learning in this area, we moved towards our School's Vision of ICT integration throughout our learning. After six years of running a very successful eLearning Special Programme, we began implementing a Bring Your Own Device initiative in 2016, for all students in the Senior School. In 2017 the Intermediate Team also went Bring Your Own Device as they were working towards a more integrated and collaborative learning model.
Students who do not have a device still have access to our school owned devices, iPads and laptops, which are provided in classes. To support this ongoing innovation, we will continue to develop the ICT infrastructure in our Year 0 to Year 4 classes, so that students already have the foundation skills when they reach Year 5.
Bring Your Own (BYO) iPad allows students to have one-to-one time on a device that is set up to their specifications for their learning. This has many benefits, including:
- enabling students to take increasing responsibility for their own learning
- empowering students to learn at a pace and place as well as in a way, which suits them
- teaches students how to discern what tool will best help with their learning
- encouraging and enabling teachers to more easily implement personalised learning
This means that students will enjoy learning both with their devices and also with more traditional means of learning, as both types of pedagogy are valid. Keeping in mind the considerable investment we are asking parents to make on these devices, teachers will endeavour to utilise devices as much as possible during the school day, as well as using them for home tasks. We are mindful of the implications of too much screen time and students will also be encouraged to take breaks from their screen, as required for their health and for the diversity of the teaching programme.