In the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade, we use laptops in the classrooms daily as part of our regular curriculum. We are very excited about this program, as we think it will help better prepare our students for their future in education, in the workforce, and in life. To help organize and facilitate the learning and work students will be doing on the computers, students will be using both Google Docs and Moodle on a regular basis. Both of these programs are used by the middle school and high school and are web based. More specific information about these programs is available below.
As part of teaching students how to use technology for learning, we also spend a lot of time devoted to teaching them how to be good digital citizens (how to behave online). We feel that using both Google Docs and Moodle are good ways of teaching this as they allow students the experience of working collaboratively in a protected online environment that offers us the ability to oversee what they are doing.
Please talk with your student - they should share their user name and password for these programs with you. It is very important for parents to stay involved with their child’s online activities so that you can support your child with their schoolwork. We send home information at the beginning of each year that details how to log on and has information on your student's login - please look for this information so that you can support your child at home.
In addition to Google Docs and Moodle students will also be using other programs for projects throughout the year. Our students access the programs through Classlink, which is a program that directs students to the right website and login. This information is also included in the beginning of year letter.
Again, we are very excited about the learning experiences and opportunities these laptops will open up to our students. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Google Drive is a cloud based (internet based) program that students will use for word processing and editing. The advantages of using this program are that it will allow students to easily collaborate on work when appropriate and they will be able to easily work from school and home. Each student will have an individual account, and their work cannot be viewed by other students unless they choose to share it. Their work also cannot be searched or viewed on the internet unless the student publishes their work to the web.
Google Apps for Education is not the same as the consumer products you can use for free online when you sign up for a personal account with Google. We have a separate agreement that states that we are the sole owners of our data and that Google will not use our data for any purpose other than improving our service.
What does this mean? No ads. No data mining. No using your child’s data to make money. No sharing your child’s data with advertisers or other third-party vendors.
Moodle is an educational web based program designed for classroom use. Each grade has their own “page”, and each student has an individual login. Students will use Moodle for collaborating, writing, and test taking. Each grade level page is self-contained; that is, the page and student’s work is not accessible unless you have the username and password. Some activities in Moodle are private between the student and teacher and some activities allow for students to share their work and interact. None of the students’ work is searchable from the internet.