Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Keyboarding pilot program a success

During last night’s Education Development meeting, BCIT Lead Teacher Jerry Abramson along with Karen Richmond and Mary Cwiklinski updated the Committee on the Keyboarding pilot program being tested on two 4th grade classes from Ferderbar. Since our district lacks an elementary computer curriculum, this recently completed pilot program is being used to assess if we can provide our younger students with a more effective computer curriculum that will educate and inspire them. Based on the written comments from the students, I think we can safely declare the test a huge success.

One student stated “The first thing I like about keyboard class is it made me faster at it so when I went on my computer I typed faster than I would usually.”

Another student said “I liked that we got to learn how to change the font color and we also learned what was inside of the computer.”

And my favorite comment . . . “I can rub it in my brother’s face that I know how [to properly keyboard] and he does not.”

Phase II of the pilot program will hopefully expand this test into all the 4th grades in elementary school next school year. However if Phase II is equally as successful next year, then our Curriculum Instruction team will be challenged to come up with a comprehensive computer education program for our elementary schools. And that will be a real challenge because up until now we have been able to accomplish this pilot with existing staff and equipment. But if we are to offer a truly robust computer curriculum for our students, it will require a financial investment. Too early to say yet just how much that will be, but let’s keep watching our pennies wisely now so we can invest in our children’s future.

Special thanks to Jerry, Karen, Mary, and everyone else involved in the pilot. You guys rock!

1 comment:

Karl said...

This has come up a number of times before this. The idea is laudable in principal, but two issues have consistently prevented adoption of a program like this: money to pay certified staff to teach the classes and time in which to teach them. Would these keyboarding classes replace the weekly computer lab periods that currently are run by the classroom teachers with the technical assistance of the computer aides? If not, what current instructional time would they replace?