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Alabama District Expands Access to Common Core-Aligned Digital Content
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Alabama's Baldwin County School District will be expanding its use of digital curriculum from Knovation this year. The 30,000 district has decided to deploy the company's icurio digital content to all 45 of its schools after piloting its use in seven high schools and one elementary school.
According to Knovation, icurio encompasses 330,000 digital resources for K-12 use that align with state and Common Core standards. icurio was first implemented during the last school year as an aspect of the district's Digital Renaissance Program, intended to encourage students to use technology every day during instruction.
The 1-to-1 program ran last year in all of the district's high schools, as well as one middle school and one elementary school. Currently, the district provides each middle and high student with an Apple MacBook Air.
It has also invested in professional development for many more teachers through the "Digital Renaissance Leadership Academy" as part of an expansion of 1-to-1 instruction. The Academy focuses on showing teachers how to incorporate project and problem-based learning in their instruction. As part of the deployment of icurio, Knovation is participating in the academy.
The district also uses digital materials from Discovery Education, Istation, YouTube, and other sources.
"As we work to transform our curriculum and instruction with both changes in pedagogy and our move to a 1-to-1 learning environment, icurio plays an important part in helping our educators plan and differentiate our challenge-based learning projects," said Janice Simon, the district's instructional transformation specialist. "The curation of the content assists teachers and students with efficient access to the best digital learning resources available. For example, with a simple click we can find robust digital materials for any readability level, which really helps us address individual student needs."
For the next phase of the program, added Superintendent Alan Lee, the district is working with parents "to show them how [icurio] can be an asset at home for assistance with homework and study."
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.