The Merritt Independent School District has been steadily investing in both a 1:1 program and building out the technological infrastructure to support it. The results have been impressive.
Before each student had a tablet, Merritt’s teachers used traditional worksheets, textbooks, and reading texts. Now, teachers create their own curriculum in iTunes U, and the majority of classrooms are paperless. As Merritt has embraced technology, teachers have had more opportunities to combine critical thinking with digital learning in their classrooms. They are excited about the digital curriculum and their enthusiasm is contagious; they share information and best practices with each other at school, Edcamps, and ISTE conferences.
In the classroom, the feedback loop between teachers and students is rapid and highly personalized. Students learn through interactive courses that involve video, active creativity, and real-time feedback from their teachers. In the elementary school, students use their tablets to figure out math problems and submit their answers. Teachers can grade those answers – and provide feedback and follow-up support – in real time. Before the 1:1 program, no one in the third grade passed the pre-test program at the beginning of the year. Each year since then, the number of third graders passing the test has increased.