SMART runs in the family
SMART recently spoke with three members of the Hayward family from New Brunswick, Canada who have embraced SMART products in their different roles as school administrator, teacher and student. Rick Hayward has recently retired as the technology coordinator for School District 16 in the Miramichi region of New Brunswick and is currently providing instruction on SMART products at a summer camp run by the Miramichi River Tourism Association. His son, Adam, is a middle school math and science teacher, and his niece, Jillian, just graduated from high school. Each shares how SMART education products have contributed to their teaching and learning.
Rick was first introduced to SMART in 1998 as a principal at Nelson Rural School, one of the first schools in the district to install a SMART Board interactive whiteboard. Since then, not only have SMART Boards been installed in every classroom of that school, but in every classroom in the district, along with a variety of other SMART products.
As a school in the world’s first SMART Showcase Community, and a SMART Showcase School itself, Miramichi Valley High School, also part of School District 16, was invited to participate in the beta testing for SMART Notebook 11 collaborative learning software. This gave Rick an opportunity to try out the software before it was launched to the public. He says two of his favorite features in SMART Notebook 11 software are the Activity Builder and the embedded web browser.
A forward-thinking school, Miramichi Valley High has also created and implemented a SMART Exemplary Student Course – a full-credit course for grades 11–12 that teaches students how to use SMART products both inside and outside of the classroom. Rick cites the Bridgit app for iPad as one of his new favorite products because it puts SMART tools in the hands of students and gives them more control and flexibility in their learning.
Now that he’s retired, Rick helps facilitate a SMART summer camp for students from grades 7–10 (this year’s camp also has two students from Germany!) giving them even more opportunities to explore all the uses of SMART products. Rick says the idea of the camp is to put the SMART tools in the hands of students, so they can explore for themselves the capabilities of these products and design projects around them. In a recent project, students in his summer course developed stop motion animations using SMART Notebook 11 software, along with Windows Live Essentials: Movie Maker to make their own movies that were displayed on the SMART Board interactive whiteboards.
Adam first used SMART products while studying for his Bachelor of Education and has been using them in his classroom from his first year of teaching. Adam is teaching young students how to use SMART Board interactive whiteboards and SMART Notebook software to make presentations through his “Star Troopers” observatory program. Students, as young as six, work on the SMART Board interactive whiteboard to prepare and give presentations on astronomy to students throughout the region. The students develop high quality SMART Notebook software content that is shared internationally. This program has grown nationally with the National Film Board of Canada profiling the Star Troopers in an upcoming documentary which has a projected budget of about one million dollars.
Jillian has been using SMART products at school for many years and, most recently, she created content for a provincial historic site using a SMART Board interactive whiteboard for a school project, which ultimately led her to a summer job at that site – the MacDonald Farm. She was offered this job after presenting her interactive SMART Notebook 11 presentation about the farm to the Highland Society of New Brunswick at Miramichi. She has also helped produce other content for the Miramichi River Tourism Association, which has 12 SMART Board interactive whiteboards in centers along a 120 kilometer stretch of the Miramichi River.
This is a great example of how SMART products can be used both inside and outside of the classroom. Through her class work, Jillian used Google SketchUp with the SMART Document Camera to profile her 3D sketch of the MacDonald Farm. Jillian says that using 3D Tools for SMART Notebook software is one of her favorite things about SMART products.
Bridgit conferencing software plays an important part in connecting the Hayward family to students and teachers around the world and allowing them to share their knowledge of and passion for SMART products. Jillian has used Bridgit in the classroom as part of an exchange with Dutch students, holding Bridgit classrooms sessions in Dutch. Adam, who has received an educational leave to pursue a Masters degree at the University of Amsterdam, will use Bridgit to keep in touch with his students in Miramichi and allow them to explore Amsterdam and the surrounding area with him. Finally, Rick has established a partnership with teachers in various parts of Africa, Asia and Europe for which he uses Bridgit with his colleague, Joey Savoy, to exchange ideas and to teach skills on various SMART products.
The Hayward family shows how SMART products can change the way students learn, teachers teach and how administrators can transform school districts to set up students for success in the future.