California Districts Add Interactive Teaching Technologies

More Southern California schools and districts are incorporating Mimio Interactive Teaching Technologies into their classrooms. During the month of September, more than 70 classrooms at Home Gardens Academy and Cesar Chavez Academy in Corona-Norco Unified School District (USD) as well as Mission Hills Elementary and Cypress School of the Arts in Hesperia USD incorporated Mimio products into their teaching practices.

With the addition of the institutions cited above, a total of 34 private schools and 26 districts across the region, including Los Angeles Unified School District (USD), San Diego USD, Orange USD, Etiwanda USD, and Murietta Valley USD, have committed to teaching with Mimio.

Educators at Cole Canyon Elementary School in Murietta Valley USD initiated a pilot program with the MimioTeach interactive whiteboard last year after Principal Mike Marble recognized that the technologies students enjoy outside school make it more difficult to capture their attention with conventional teaching tools like textbooks and overhead projectors.

“Cole Canyon teachers do an excellent job in helping out students excel academically. Yet, teaching today has to be more hands-on, integrated and thematic instead of worksheet and drill-oriented,” said Marble. “This solution has given our teachers a way to step out of the traditional role of just ‘instructing’ and into one where they are facilitators to the learning process and students are active participants.”

California educators aren’t alone in embracing the use of interactive teaching technologies in the classroom. In a report, “K-12 Tech Tools and Trend 2012, publishing forecast firm Simba Information revealed that interactive whiteboards are used in nearly 30 percent of K-12 classroom for at least 5.1 hours a day. The publisher also noted that interactive whiteboards have the most penetration of any recent tech device, with an average usage of more than 70 percent in all major subject areas in elementary schools.

“I regularly use technology as a motivational tool, as a way to differentiate and quickly and accurately assess students’ understanding of the standards, and to hold each student accountable for their own learning,” said Angela Helmer, third-grade teacher, Todd Elementary in Corona-Norco USD. “I have students completing touch-screen monitor computer-based learning activities, other are dancing their way through their learning on a dance mat, while others are at the front of the room using the Mimio interactive whiteboard with the interactive pen to work on a kinesthetically-based vocabulary lesson.”

For Nancy Jones, a second-grade teacher at Todd Elementary, the power comes from MimioVotes. “The responders have been so easy to use and have really kept the kids engaged in the learning process. I love having the instant feedback of their understanding of the concept taught because it allows me to move on or to clarify any confusion. The students even discuss why a student may have picked an incorrect answer.”

MimioClassroom products include the MimioTeach™ interactive whiteboard, which converts any dry erase board into a interactive whiteboard; MimioVote™ assessment; MimioView™ document camera; MimioPad™ wireless pen tablet; and MimioCapture™ ink recorder.