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Student Showcase at Dell
Posted by Heather Chirtea at 04:33:12 PM Thu 05/21/2015
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Event on May 27th, 10:00 AM- 11:00 AM

Mt. Pleasant Elementary School was awarded a technology grant by Digital Wish and Dell.  The 5th grade students will display their projects and demonstrate the technology skills that they have acquired as a result of the weekly program. 

We've invited: New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan, Nashua Mayor Donnalee Lozeau, NH Senator Jeanne Shaheen and NH Senator Kelly Ayotte, Press and Media, Nashua School District officials and administrators, Digital Wish personnel, national and local Dell executives and employees, and the Mt. Pleasant 5th grade students and teachers.

Here is some great data on the program!

Dell and Digital Wish Work Together to Bring Measured Improvements in Technology Skills to Students in Nashua's Underserved Communities
 
Digital Wish’s continued partnership with Dell is helping another Nashua school make great strides in critical IT skills and integrate engaging 21st century learning skills into daily lessons.  Using computers donated by Dell, students learn to harness cloud-based technologies that will serve them throughout their educational journey and into their careers.  Students learn a new skill and work with Dell volunteers to explore career paths.
 
Eric Bird, Digital Wish’s Project Director for Nashua, has been visiting the 4th and 5th grade classrooms at Mt. Pleasant on a weekly basis to teach and integrate current technologies into their existing curriculum.  Students and educators have been learning essential ICT skills such as digital citizenship, cyber safety, reliable research, media creation and presentation, and communication and collaboration skills.  Through the use of this technology, the students have greatly improved their critical thinking and problem solving skills. 
In April, the 5th grade students visited the Nashua Dell facility to interview team members on technology and careers.  The students will visit Dell again on Wednesday, May 27, 2015 to showcase their technology projects for Dell team members, show off their programming skills, and demonstrate how they have been applying technology in the classroom learning environment. 
Measured Improvements
As a result of this program: 
 
Increased Usage - After the program, students used a computer every day in the classroom 30 times more than before.  Students who reported participating in 10 or more technology projects that required them to solve a problem, gather information, or draw a conclusion rose from 12% to 86%.
Increased Safe Usage - After the program, students rated themselves an average of 9 (on a scale of 1-10) or higher when they rated how well they could protect their personal information on the internet, treat other people with respect on the internet, and safely use the internet.  After the program, students rated themselves 8.5 or higher when asked how much they knew about what they legally can and cannot do on the internet, their rights on the internet, and their responsibilities on the internet.
Increasing IT Skills - Students rated themselves higher in every single technology skill after the program, and more than doubled their self-rating on how well they can use spreadsheets or Excel.  The percentage of students who said they were beginners on computers decreased from 11% to 4%, a near 300% drop.  The number of students who can figure out almost anything on their own while using a computer rose from 29% to 35.4%.
Increased Collaboration – Students collaborating with adults at least once a week while using technology rose from 46% to 94%.  The number of students who collaborated with other students at least once a week while using technology more than tripled. 
 
 “Digital Wish’s program is designed to equip students with technology skills that make them more employable in their future careers,” said Heather Chirtea, Digital Wish’s Executive Director.  “We’ve put Dell initiatives into schools across New Hampshire and Vermont, and the kids are universally more engaged in learning.  That’s important because an engaged student will stay in school.  In addition, visiting Dell has given students exposure to real IT careers.”
Anecdotal Improvements:
In addition to the measurable improvements above, teachers and students provided anecdotes on their experiences:
 
“My favorite thing was that I could teach my parents to be safe on the internet.”
“School is absolutely nothing without the internet and technology.  It makes school work easier so you don't fail.  You can learn something new with the computer.”
“I learned a new skill and that is researching faster than I did before and to do it correctly.”
“Technology is great in school because it will prepare us for the future and we can now do special tests on the computer which means that we do not need to use papers and pencil as much and that means the environment is getting help.”
 
Research Reports
Learn more about Digital Wish's research and download Nashua's reports here:
 
About Digital Wish
Digital Wish is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation on a mission to solve technology shortfalls in K-12 classrooms.
At www.digitalwish.org, teachers make technology wishes, and donors make those wishes come true with contributions, bringing technology to needy classrooms in all 50 states.  Since August 2009, Digital Wish has granted over 31,000 classroom technology wishes through its online network of 65,000 teachers, and delivered over $14 million in technology products to American classrooms directly impacting over 500,000 students.  In research, Digital Wish secured over $1.5M in stimulus funding and grants to put 1:1 computing into 30 schools, achieving measured gains in student engagement and 21st century skills.
 
The Digital Wish website provides simple online fundraising tools so that parents, community members, and PTAs can make cost-free contributions to classrooms.  This puts classroom technology directly into the hands of teachers so that education will become more relevant and valuable to students growing up in an increasingly digital society.  Digital Wish has set up hundreds of grants together with vendors and connected thousands of donors with local schools.  Find out more at www.digitalwish.org.
 

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