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Brooklyn School Pilots iPads in 1-to-1 Initiative

Yeshivah of Flatbush (YOF) will soon use iPads for everyday learning. The 1-to-1 iPad initiative will start this fall at Yeshivah's Joel Braverman High School and will expand to the YOF Elementary School after it establishes wireless access.

Over the last few years Brooklyn-based YOF has made educational technology in its classrooms a priority, so iPads are the next stage in its development. Rabbi Raymond Harari, head of school for Joel Braverman High School, talked to parents in a recent iPad orientation meeting about personal computing devices being "the norm" in the near future so the school should prepare students to make intelligent, constructive and responsible use of them.

"Smart Boards are now in every classroom; our library resources are increasingly available digitally; our teachers have created their own Web sites; and this is the next stage in our process," Harari said.

Sixty freshmen have already received their own iPads and will be using them daily in class and at home. Starting in fall, freshman and sophomore students will be required to have an iPad in school.

Rabbi Lawrence Schwed, YOF Elementary School Principal, recently announced that 30 iPads will be distributed on loan to teachers who have volunteered to learn how to use and experiment with them in the classroom. Teachers will then share creative techniques for the classroom with colleagues.

Yeshivah's leadership said that utilizing new media will engage students more than before, expand opportunities for individualized learning and research, and facilitate collaboration and interactive activities in-school and throughout the world.

"The iPad supports Hebrew," Assistant Principal Rabbi Joseph Beyda said. "We will be using the iPad in Judaic Studies classes as well as in secular studies classes and believe that Hebrew will be more fully supported as iPad use continues to grow."

YOF made arrangements with Apple for leasing iPads through YOF. The school cited relative affordability, portability, durability, and sustainability as reasons for choosing the iPad.

About the Author

Kimberly Horg-Webb is a reporter based in California. She can be reached at kimhorgwebb@yahoo.com.

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