On Monday, Evangeline Parish Schoolboard President Darwin Lazard conducted a Basile Schools Showcase of their new ActivPanels with the assistance of Basile High School Principal Helana Francois and W. W. Stewart Elementary Principal Danielle Young. Each classroom of the schools are equipped with a Promethean Titanium ActivPanel and every teacher attended a 2-hour webinar to learn panel basics and how ot use the features of the devices. Additionally, they have full access to online training anytime, allowing them to explore the devices and learn at their own paces.
In Ms. Krystle Smith’s 7th Grade math classroom, the class engaged in a Jeopardy-style game consisting of questions related to their current lessons. Once students were divided into groups, a question was selected for them to work out and solve together using the methods they learn in class. When group members agreed on an answer, they “buzzed in” their answer and sent one member to work out the problem on the board. In actuality, the game is an educational PowerPoint designed by Ms. Krystal Smith to engage the class in a fun and interactive way. Because the ActivPanel works as a computer, she and other teachers can also share their screens with students both in class and at home using their ChromeBooks. Students can also screen share their projects from wherever they are connected, allowing teachers to monitor their class at all times whether online or in-person.
Ms. Sadie Guillory’s 5th Grade math class worked together to answer review questions using the panel. Using PAX methods, they took turns as student leader and helped each other correct their answers using the many functions and features of the ActivPanel. They said that being able to work together and not go one at a time makes for a more engaging classroom experience. They agreed that having a board with only one multipurpose pen is easier than their previous device, which had multiple styluses and erasers that often got misplaced. Additionally, the screen operates without a projector, making it much clearer even for students in the back of the room.
Even the youngest students benefit from the ActivPanel’s many features, like Ms. Norma Lebleu’s Kindergarten class, who demonstrated for the Superintendent how they can learn to sound out words together while they take turns arranging letters on the board to form words. They especially enjoy the clearer sound system, which allows them to sing along to their educational songs and listen to stories.
Ms. Sadie Lebleu’s 3rd Grade ELA class wrapped up the day by saying that they hope every classroom and student in Evangeline Parish can get their own ActivPanel. They said that the device is smoother than their previous board, since it updates and never goes out-of-date. Mr. Lazard said that there are currently 157 boards around Evangeline Parish, and even though Basile is currently the only school with ActivPanels in every classroom, he hopes to eventually get one in every classroom in Evangeline Parish.