McDevitt Gets “SMART”

McDevitt Gets “SMART” In today’s technological era, the classroom experience has been improved for a countless number of students worldwide when compared to the previous decade. For one thing, the presence of the SMART Board has provided an engaging and interactive learning experience. The SMART Board is an interactive whiteboard that promotes collaboration and allows students to have a more modern educational experience. The creator of the SMART Board, Smart Technologies, currently facilitates learning in classrooms across the nation through educators’ use of their innovative tools. Another program that is making its way into classrooms around the country is SMART amp. Winner of the 2015 Bett Award, SMART amp allows students to fill a blank workspace with pictures, videos, text, shapes and other creative visuals to put together a complete project. Through its use at Bishop McDevitt High School, students have been able to create original and captivating projects. This year, Mr. Jeff Moffo’s Accounting, Computer Technology and Criminal Justice classes got the opportunity to utilize the SMART amp technology, as well as Ms. Anne Marie Kolla’s Theology classes. Impressed by Bishop McDevitt’s usage of the SMART amp service, representatives flew in from as near as New York City and as far as Calgary in Alberta, Canada in order to record McDevitt students in action. Several other students were selected to participate in interviews about their own experience using the workspace tool. James Griffin, the Strategic Engagement Manager for SMART technologies, said in an interview that SMART technologies has a plan in place to work with local leadership, making sure that the right technology options are given in the classrooms. “An adoption…is in place to support that technology introduced to the schools… and superintendents downtown,” Griffin said. The SMART amp cloud-based service was in production for about nine months before its launch in April 2013. Griffin also stated that other schools utilizing the service include Prince George’s county in Maryland (Title I schools), districts in Ontario, Canada, city schools in Atlanta, Georgia, as well as the School District of Philadelphia. The technology that will soon be replacing the SMART Boards will be SMART technologies newest innovation: the Interactive Flat Panel. It’s cost-efficient and will be expected to run for about fifteen to twenty years. It also uses fifteen percent of the electrical costs of the projector and is easier to use. Editors Note: Four McDevitt students and their teacher, Mr. Jeff Moffo were invited by SMART Technologies to present at the ISTE Conference in Philadelphia on June 28, 2015. While at the conference, the students demonstrated how the SMART amp technology can be used as a “creative and innovative way for students to complete assignments.

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