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Learning Technology Grant Winner: Great Expectations, PS 85

Award Years: 2015-2018


3AM (Anytime Anyplace Anywhere Mobile) is a collaborative interdisciplinary one to one project involving a partnership between two Bronx public schools PS 85, an NYSED designated Priority School, PS 159, an NYSED designated Focus School and St Thomas Aquinas, a nonpublic K-8 school, located within the geographic community of District 10. PS 85 will serve as the lead school in the consortium. Over the three -year grant period, 3AM will provide iPads to over 180 grade 3 students and 90 grade 5 students all enrolled in an ICT (Students with disabilities who receive Integrated Co-Teaching services) program at their schools. The 3AM consortium was formed among these Bronx schools out of a common need: to increase support for literacy and academic success by providing access to technology 24/7 and a learning environment that nurtures multiple modalities for learning for the most at risk students in the nation. In addition, 3AM will promote an increase in teacher effectiveness through the adoption of 21st century teaching and learning strategies, a key component of the Regents Reform Agenda. 3AM will provide a hands-on, blended learning interdisciplinary approach to literacy that will take advantage of all of the accessibility tools provided by the iPad (i.e. text to speech, language translation, zoom in screen, camera and audio recording features. 3AM will empower students ability for independent learning using such Apps as Evernote, Notability, Educreations and Morfo for journal writing, development of lesson content knowledge in all subjects and daily note taking supporting auditory as well as visual learning. English Language Learners and Special Needs students will use digital media Apps such as Hyperstudio Author and iMovie to engage in interdisciplinary reading and writing activities across schools (alignment with ELA Shifts in Common Core Learning Standards: Balancing Informational and Literary Text and Building Knowledge in the Disciplines).

The goals of 3AM are:

  • To improve academic performance in achieving mastery of the NYS Learning and Common Core Standards in literacy
  • To increase the use of instructional technology, specifically mobile devices, in collaborative projects to enhance students learning and foster 21st century skills.
  • To improve teacher effectiveness by emphasizing pedagogical best practices in using mobile technologies and cloud-based apps in the classroom and library media center.

Major project activities for 3AM include the following:

Activity: Analytical and Applied Reading and Writing – Students will strengthen their content knowledge using anchor text and reading and writing strategies with validated NYC literacy curriculum such as ReadyGen as a model for developing their own writing. Using a flipped classroom strategy they will research content themes using Kahn Academy and Learning Birds videos to strengthen understanding of nonfiction topics. (CCLS RI 3.1-3.9, 5.1-5.9)

Activity: Writing Process- Understanding of Writing Structures and Language – Using visual and audio supports, students will be able to understand and apply the stages of writing process including planning, revising, editing and publishing original works in a cloud based environment. (CCLS W 3.1-3.10, 5.1-5.10) (CCLS SL 3.4-3.6, 5.4-5.6) Activity: Sharing and Community and Social Skill Building – Students share their writing and visual media projects via video conference and Google Classroom in the form of video, audio recordings and text using Apps such as iMovie, Comic Life and Diana. Sharing and discussing across communities, students develop an understanding of people from diverse cultural backgrounds and build empathy and awareness of global issues. Students will increase their ability to interact positively with others, accept alternate viewpoints, and offer mutually constructive feedback. (CCLS L 3.1-3.3, 5.1-5.3; SL 3.1-3.3, 5.1-5.3)

Activity: Formative Assessment and Evaluation – Student writing and multimedia portfolios will be developed each year using Google Drive. Rubrics will be developed to assess authentic work. Peer review and selfassessment are key components of the 3AM staff development program, as emphasized in the NYS Professional Development and NYS Teaching Standards and all schools in this project will apply these strategies with the goal of improving student performance.