During our BYOD Prototype a variety of devices were used.
Here a student is using his iPad to record how he solves a
own and I learn things on my own laptop.” “ I think I am more in charge of my learning because when I
have accounts on websites like IXL or Outlook, it helps me because I do it (access) at school and I don't
have a hard time when I do it (access) at home because it's already been done before on the same
With their own laptops, we feel students have had expanded learning opportunities. For example,
students who have been interested in programming have pursued their interests by programming
Arduino boards, or using Scratch. Others have created websites about their personal interests as well.
Learning New Skills
Mini-tech workshops were conducted several times during the year in the fourth grade to give students
more exposure and opportunities to explore their own personal interests. Students were able to choose
from a selection of tools and had opportunities to share their new learning and areas of expertise. They
continued to learn more about the tools at home and many of them utilized these skills in later class
Within a relatively short time frame, fourth grade students built up their tech skills and confidence quickly.
By giving students an opportunity to choose and explore their own personal interests we saw students
return to school with new skills that they had polished at home. Not only did they learn about these
tools, but they were also exposed to a rapid learning environment where they were able to understand
and explore the capabilities of these tools. Their independent learning resulted in a grade level of
students who were diverse experts in various tools.
After these mini-tech workshops, we feel they continued to approach new tools with a 'give it a go'
mindset and also with the ability to transfer what they knew from other tools to new tools. (e.g. This is
how it works with Weebly, so I think I can work out how to use Blogger). We felt the time invested in
these workshops was worthy and provided each student with a toolbox of skills to utilize in future units
and projects. We also felt that students could take what they learned in class and pursue topics that
interested them and use tools and apps in new and creative ways both in and out of the classroom.
Students’ Response to BYOD
Both grade 4 and 5 students have responded
positively to the shift to BYOD. In data gathered
through surveys, students stated they are happy
bringing and using their own laptops. Students
felt that using their own laptop was more
personal and easier. They noted that the laptops
worked faster than school computers. Lastly,
they felt more responsible by having their own
computer and had better accessibility both at
home and school.
Other benefits we observed included the ability
to use laptops with keyboards setup for different
languages; students do not need to share a