South Carolina Honors Education Technology

The South Carolina Association for Education Technology (SCAET) recently announced the winners of its 2010 Technology Innovation Program (TIP) Awards. Read on to learn about the educators and institutions who have made a difference through innovative uses of education technology in South Carolina public schools. Schools offering Instructional Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

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Innovations in Education Technology

Each year, the South Carolina Association for Educational Technology (SCAET) honors 'outstanding and innovative uses of technology in education' at the annual South Carolina EdTech Conference. The Technology Innovative Program (TIP) Awards program recognizes K-12 public schools that have demonstrated a commitment to using technology to improve education.

The latest awards were announced this fall at the 2010 SC EdTech Conference in Myrtle Beach. TIP awards went to:

Ballentine Elementary

Ballentine is in the Lexington / Richland Five School District in central South Carolina. The award recognized its 'Communication 2.0: Using Blogs and Podcasts in the Classroom' program, which uses podcasts and blogs to expand the curriculum and strengthen relationships between students and teachers. For one portion of the program, each student is given a blog to reflect on his or her learning and communicate with other students about the curriculum. In addition, there are three podcasts developed in the classrooms:

  • A teacher-cast that delivers weekly messages to students;
  • 'KidCast,' which gives students an opportunity to write a script and record their own podcasts;
  • And 'StudyCast,' in which the teacher records verbal study guides.

Creek Bridge High School

Creek Bridge is in Marion School District Seven in west South Carolina near Myrtle Beach. The school received an award for its 'At-Risk Student Innovation Supplemental Grant Program,' which targets freshman English and language arts students. The goal of the project is to develop students' abilities so they can read and comprehend high level texts - necessary for academic success in high school and beyond. The program emphasizes technology integration, intense student computer training and teacher professional development.

Marion School District Seven

The entire Marion District Seven was also recognized for its 'Laptop for Everyone' initiative, launched in 2007. The district created the program because administrators felt that all students would need technology skills in order to thrive in 21st century educational and professional worlds. Since most students in the district do not have access to computers at home, the district endeavored to give students 24/7 access to school laptops in order to help them develop these essential skills.

An honorable mention was also given to Bluffton Elementary in south South Carolina for its 'Animate Me!' program. The program helps students gain a deeper understanding of the curriculum through the visual arts by using animation software to connect different elements of classroom instruction.

education tech

Making It Happen

In addition to the TIP Awards, the SCAET gave two 'Making It Happen' awards to individuals that have exercised great influence on education in South Carolina through technology.

One award went to Richard Nadeau, the former (now retired) executive director for technology at Horry County Schools. He piloted a series of new programs, including online assessment for End of Course Testing. Nadeau continues to make an impact by bringing new technology to the attention of educators throughout the state.

The second award went to Ida Thompson, instructional services director for Richland School District One. Thompson has worked for Richland One for 32 years, delivering nationally recognized professional development and resource delivery services for education technology. Previous to her position as director, Thompson worked in the district as a school library media specialist and as a consultant interpreting state and national technology information literacy standards.

The 'Making It Happen' awards program is sanctioned by the International Society for Technology in Education.

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