Vanguard College Preparatory School today announced it will expand its educational technology initiative in the 2011 fall semester when video podcasts will be provided for most of the school’s math and science classes.
Vanguard’s initiative, recently named Engage, began in 2007 when instructive podcasts of advanced placement (AP) Calculus classes were made available to students. The offerings were expanded to include other math classes in 2009. Then, at the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year, every Vanguard math class lecture became available on video podcasts.
In 2008-2009, a Vanguard student who spent a semester in Italy was able to complete the course successfully by watching the podcasts and communicating with the teacher via e-mail.
“Students learn differently today, and we try to use the technology that students use every day to facilitate learning when it is appropriate,” said Joe Flowers, Vanguard College Preparatory School’s director of technology. “Sometimes this means pushing the envelope. Many people thought we were crazy giving all students e-mail accounts in 1994, but today it is part of every student’s everyday life.”
The podcasts enhance in-class and out-of-class instructional time while fostering independent, collaborative and active learning. Starting the fall 2011 semester, podcasts will expand to include most of Vanguard’s science classes.
“It’s great because I’m basically not missing class,” said Riley DeWitt, a senior at Vanguard College Preparatory School who watches class podcasts when he’s absent from school. “It’s really easy to use too.”
Vanguard will also continue testing the iPad as an educational tool. Currently, faculty and students are using iPads to create and access instructional materials for several classes. Starting with the fall 2011 semester, a section of Vanguard’s Algebra 1 class will test the digital text, HMH Fuse: Algebra 1.
[information]Vanguard Engage April 2011[/information]