The Elmbrook Education Foundation supports the students at all 11 of the District's public schools through its Continuing Education Scholarship, Innovation Grant and Super Grant Programs. In addition, the Foundation has established an endowment held by the Waukesha County Community Foundation to provide a source of permanent support for Foundation programs. For more information, please refer to the Foundation's web site.
The School District of Elmbrook was proud to host a visit by the Wisconsin Technology Initiative (WTI) this week. WTI representatives toured Dixon and Swanson Elementary Schools, where teachers showcased technology tools including ipads, SMART Boards, SMART Document Cameras and SMART Response Systems.
WTI provided a $50,000 technology grant to the district this year, which completed the Elmbrook Education Foundation's campaign to equip every elementary school classroom with a SMART Document Camera. SMART Document Cameras are able to project text from a book, three-dimensional objects, a student’s written work or a teacher’s original work onto a SMART Board at a magnified level for all students to see. Content and images displayed on the SMART Board can then be captured digitally to allow for group editing, saving for later use, or sharing across classrooms. Ultimately, the document camera supports a greater level of student engagement and increased understanding through its responsiveness to just-in-time classroom learning needs. It also supports the ability to deliver lessons to a large group that previously were only possible in a small group format.
Elmbrook implemented SMART Response Systems in every middle school classroom in 2009-2010 thanks to a grant from the Elmbrook Education Foundation made possible through community support. These units allow staff to determine how well a class is understanding material in real time so that they can adjust and/or differentiate instruction as needed to meet their students needs. Additional information on this grant can be found on the Super Grants page of the Foundation's web site.
The use of iPads is also being piloted in select classrooms. These units have been purchased, in part, by organizations like the Elmbrook Education Foundation as well as building level PTOs to learn how iPads can benefit instruction before any large investment is made in the technology. Innovation grants are made possible through the proceeds of building and district level fundraisers hosted by these organizations. Certain staff act as Technology leaders and volunteer to use the technology and share their experiences to ensure that the District's Technology Plan is sensitive to the benefits as well as the challenges associated with using new technology for instruction.
Pictured below are some of those involved in the WTI Visit last week. Chris Thompson (SDE CIO), David Frank (EEF President), Laura Schmidt (EEF Executive Director), Mary Beth Bartels (Swanson Technology Integrator), John and Tashia Morgridge (Founders of WTI), Mike Kerr (WTI Director), Matt Gibson (SDE Superintendent), Kori Hartman (Swanson Principal).
Additional photos from the visit can be found on the Foundation's facebook page at www.facebook.com/EEFWI. 'Like' the Foundation on facebook to stay up to date.