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New tool in school

Suzie Harrison

Equipped with a license to drive, students in Linda Jarhaus’

second-grade class took turns speeding through the super highways of

the internet.

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This time their journey would be on a chalkboard-size Smart Board

that the Top of the World Elementary School class received three

weeks ago.

The board is a large-screen interactive whiteboard that turns a

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computer and projector into a teaching tool for interaction and

collaboration. It’s touch sensitive so the students used their finger

as a mouse on the board.

Students are required to have a license complete with a photo,

name, school, teacher’s name and classroom number before they can use

the Smart Board.

On Monday the kids were studying worms and soil. They put in a

search for “yuckiest bugs” and found the site

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www.yucky.kids.discovery.com.

When they reached the appropriate site, which, according to

7-year-old Jack Winter there was plenty of “yucky fun and games,” the

teacher had the students take turns interacting with the Smart Board

and reading information about worms and soil.

From there they navigated to Worm World.

“We learn about worms as recyclers,” said Bryan Ludloff, 7.

“He’s eating different fruits and vegetables and casting it,” said

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Larry Stewart, 8.

After reading up on what worms do, they released them into the

garden. The teacher asked them to raise their hands if they had seen

cocoons in the worm compost. Immediately all the students excitedly

threw their arms into the air.

“There were some really great baby worms,” said 8-year-old Sarah

Finkelstein.

The Smart Board proved to be a useful tool to not only interest

the students in the study of worms, but to get them researching and

reading about them.

“I think it’s fun to use,” said Liz Fletcher, 7. “We can learn a

lot -- it’s a lot easier for our teacher to teach us instead of us

all gathering around the computer.”

* SUZIE HARRISON is a reporter for the Laguna Beach Coastline

Pilot. She may be reached at 494-4321 or suzie.harrison@latimes.com.


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