1-to-1 iPad initiative expanding in educational programs

Bolstered by its innovative 1-to-1 iPad program last year, Dominican’s Department of Education plans to expand the initiative to its Multiple Subject and Education Specialist programs this coming academic year. Patrick Fahy ‘09, for one, is glad for that.

“My participation in student teaching in a 1 on 1 iPad initiative school helped me teach my students dramatically. I was encouraged by Dominican’s administration and my master teachers to utilize the iPads on a daily basis,” says Fahy, a history teacher at San Jose Middle School in Novato.

“Incorporating technology is a way to present the material in a different medium than the textbook and workbook.  Technology is so prevalent in today’s society, that neglecting it in the classroom is not beneficial to the students.”

The 1-to-1 iPad program was introduced last year to twenty five teaching credential candidates in Dominican’s Single Subject Teacher Preparation Program.  Truesdell and colleague Dr. Rebecca Birch, technology facilitator, designed the course instruction, and 10 education faculty members from Dominican's School of Education and Counseling Psychology spent a semester learning how to integrate iPad technology into their own course offerings.

“The coursework was designed to equip, educate, and support teaching credential candidates to meet the level of technological expertise required in today’s K-12 classrooms,” says Dr. Elizabeth Truesdell in the School of Liberal Arts and Education.

In its June 2016 edition, Education Week, a leading education publication, noted Dominican is one of only five schools nationwide “to have taken deliberate steps in recent years to better integrate technology into their curricula and cultures."

Fahy, who taught last year at Kenilworth Junior High School in Petaluma, noted that having iPads allowed his students to take a virtual trip to ancient China.  His students went at their own pace and created a travel brochure on one subject, such as the Forbidden City, through their iPad app Pages. The students’ iPads connected to the smart TVS in the classroom, which allowed them to present their work to the class.

“The iPads allowed the student to be creative in their projects,” says Fahy, who graduated from Dominican in 2009 with a BA in History.“ It gave the students a choice of what end product they wanted to produce, e.g. an iMovie, Google slide, brochure, or gallery walk. The possibilities were endless and the students were engaged, excited, and focused on the material.”

That’s the ideal scenario for participants in Dominican’s 1 on 1 iPad initiative.

“Dominican is ahead of the national curve when it comes to its approach with technology. The goal is to help teaching credential candidates select and adapt instructional tools to address and engage students’ varying learning styles and abilities,” Truesdell says. “Today’s students live in a digital world, and teachers must recognize that and be prepared to use technology effectively.”


August 17, 2016