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Our digital revolution

2015 February 19

When I was in elementary school, we laboriously wrote our book reports longhand. Now, students at Herrera Elementary School are creating illustrated book reports on their tablets using programs such as iMovie, Animoto, Prezi, and Roxio. You can see for yourself how engaged these young people are in a story and video posted here.

During the entire month of February, we are asking all of our teachers to try something new in their classrooms using digital resources and to share what they’re doing by posting on social media using the hashtag #HISDdigital. That’s how we discovered that first-graders at Piney Point Elementary are learning coding every Thursday, Davis High School students are creating videos to teach their teachers how to use web tools like Blendspace and EDpuzzle, and Energy Institute High School students are collaborating on a new Touch Table. See pictures of those students and more digital learners here.

Of course, every day is digital learning day at HISD, and our new online teaching and learning platform called the PowerUp:HUB is transforming how our teachers deliver instruction. Austin High School social studies teacher George Caldwell is using the HUB to facilitate student discussion, administer tests, and collaborate with his fellow teachers. Read more about that here.

The HUB is still in the pilot stage throughout the end of this academic year, but if all goes as planned, we will roll it out to all 283 campuses next year. That means that HISD teachers and students will be able to logon from any device with Internet access and use the platform to collaborate, communicate, and access educational resources and tools. It’s all part of a digital revolution that is transforming teaching and learning at HISD.

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