Building a strong foundation for digital literacy - Education Matters Magazine
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), Technology

Building a strong foundation for digital literacy

When it comes to leveraging technology to allow students to better access the curriculum at every level of their schooling, JB HI-FI Education provides the technology and support to schools for building a streamlined and effective digital ecosystem on campus.

In today’s digital age, the integration of technology in primary school curriculum has become increasingly important. Technology has the potential to revolutionise the way children learn, providing them with endless possibilities for exploration and engagement. By leveraging technology effectively, educators can enhance the learning experience and meet the diverse needs of their students. One way to achieve this in the primary school curriculum is by incorporating interactive learning tools and applications. These can provide students with immediate feedback, allowing them to track their progress and address areas of improvement. For example, online maths games and programs can make learning fun by turning it into a game-like experience while simultaneously teaching important concepts.

Technology enables educators to provide students with personalised learning experiences and improve digital literacy, ultimately preparing them for a successful future working in the digital economy. With online platforms and adaptive learning systems, teachers can tailor instruction to individual student needs, thereby maximising their learning potential. This not only fosters academic growth but also promotes independence and self-directed learning.

The benefits of building one Edtech ecosystem on campus

Founded in 2019 as the new Catholic P-12 School on the Sunshine Coast, Good Samaritan Catholic College wanted to empower educators by having one creative and collaborative ecosystem across the school, according to Principal Greg Myers. For this purpose, the school chose the Apple platform: iPad from Prep to Year 9 and Mac for the Senior Years.

“Education is all about empowering young people to take their place in society. So, when we’re setting up a new school, you’ve got to get everything right the first time because it’s going to last for a long time,” says Mr Myers. “We went with the Apple platform because we believe it’s the best platform for our young people to access the curriculum through technology.”

Good Samaritan Catholic College saw the importance of having one creative and collaborative ecosystem across the school.

He says students can see the benefit of having one integrated ecosystem between the Macs and the iPads in the classroom and the program works well for everyone on campus. “The Prep to Year 3 students share devices, and then from Years 4 to 9, it’s a one-to-one Apple iPad,” he explains. “Then, as students head into their senior years, it’s important that they have a device that is more capable and that’s where our transition from iPad to the Mac starts in Year 10. The Mac offers them a new platform to expand their opportunities for learning and the power and efficiency the MacBook Air offers is unparalleled.”

Mr Myers maintains that working with JB Hi-Fi Education, an Apple Authorised Education Specialist, to facilitate the program on campus has been a fantastic experience for the school, since the staff first reached out and engaged with them. “They make you feel as though you’re not just another customer or a number in the queue. They’ve been able to ensure delivery of our devices every time and they make it a personal experience with a dedicated Account Manager.”

Solutions for a digital world

JB Hi-Fi has been around for over 40 years, with its JB Hi-Fi Education business in existence for around 21 of those years. “As part of its larger entity in Australia, JB Hi-Fi Education works to assist schools around the country with their one-to-one deployment of devices, as well as many other electronic requirements they may have, from white goods through to drones, cameras, and more,” say JB Hi-Fi Education Account Manager, Amber Walker. “We also offer a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) program which we work with hundreds of schools on.”

Ms Brittany Smith, a Good Samaritan Catholic College teacher who uses Apple iPads to support her curriculum, says that they have helped her encourage students to be more independent and reflective learners in class. “iPads support the delivery of curriculum in my classroom across all learning areas by giving me the ability to set up learning activities on the iPads that students are able to access at any time,” says Ms Smith. “So, if there’s something that we’ve done as a whole class that they need to refer back to, students can go back and have a look at the resources that are there.”

The school chose to work on the Apple platform: iPad from Prep to Year 9 and Mac for the Senior Years.

Good Samaritan Catholic College primary students enjoy working with their iPads at school as a more interactive and flexible way to learn. One of those students, Lillian, says: “The iPads are very engaging and easy to use.” Meanwhile, Luka believes “it’s easy to use and [students] can do their work from anywhere.” Charlie says, “The best thing about using my device would probably be the draw tool because it’s got lots of different colours. Just like using a normal pencil you can practise your handwriting.” Isla says, “You can naturally write and highlight stuff, so you know what each question is about.”

Mr Harrison Cartledge, a Good Samaritan Catholic College teacher at the senior year level, says he enjoys using a MacBook because it helps him connect with students when showing them how to use software. “When we use the same products and we both have a MacBook, I can easily show students how to use Adobe or any other software used in media and they can follow along and replicate what I am doing on their devices,” he says. Good Samaritan Catholic College senior student Molly comments, “My MacBook has made me feel so much more organised. With the different features and the applications, I never feel pressed for time for deadlines, I always just feel ready to go.”

iPads have proven to be a more interactive and flexible way to learn for Good Samaritan students.

The effective integration of technology in the school curriculum has the potential to revolutionise the learning experience and JB Hi-Fi Education delivers this through consistent support and service to schools and teaching staff. By incorporating interactive tools, personalised learning experiences, and collaborative opportunities, educators can harness the power of technology to create engaging and meaningful learning environments for their students.

“Working with JB Hi-Fi’s Tech Team has been an absolutely seamless process. With the support we have received from JB Hi-Fi, we’ve been able to have our devices ready have our devices in the kids’ hands on the first day of school,” concludes Principal Myers. “The JB team have met every one of our requirements at school here and we’re really happy to continue that partnership moving forward.”

To watch the Good Samaritan Catholic College case study, visit: https://qrco.de/JBGSCC

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