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St. Anne Catholic School Brings 21st Century Technology into Classroom

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As the students took turns answering the questions their images appeared next to the scientist on the split screen of the whiteboard (main photo), which allowed the class to see both the scientist at Science North and their classmates at the same time. The success of the videoconference and the ability to use 21st. century technology in the classroom provides the Sudbury Catholic District School Board’s students with the digital tools needed to engage in meaningful learning opportunities where they can share their knowledge and build on each other’s theories and ideas.

February 20, 2009 - St. Anne Catholic School in Hanmer has entered into a unique partnership with Science North by piloting an in-class videoconference session. Students from Mr. Thomson’s Grade 6 class utilized Macbook laptop computers and the newly installed Smartboard technology in the classroom to conduct a videoconference with Bruce Doran, a Bluecoat and Staff Scientist from Science North.

The program Science North is presenting is entitled Predators and their Prey. The program is suitable for grades 4 to 6 but has specific curriculum links in grades 4 and 6.

The videoconference lasted approximately 50 minutes in length and allowed staff scientists to dialogue with the students through a question and answer session. St. Anne students examined various biological samples such as skulls, claws, and teeth to learn some of the animals' physical and behavioural features that allow them to obtain food and survive in their habitat. The material included in the Science North kit contained animal skulls, skeletons, and animal tracks which had been delivered to the school in advance.

This videoconference provided the students with not only a “one of a kind hands on learning experience” but also demonstrated how the use of technology can foster creative and unique partnerships in the Sudbury community.

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