London District Catholic School Board’s educATe website is officially up and running after a day of presentations and hands-on exploring on Friday Sept 21st. We started this PD day with two hands-on sessions in a board office computer lab with about 40 Educational Assistants (EA’s).
Then in the afternoon we toured educATe with about 200 people in a conference room at the Four Points Sheraton. Myself and one of Bridges’ key trainers in the area, Regina Saunders, brought 20 laptops, so a good number of the audience had an opportunity to check out educATe themselves.
There was lots of enthusiastic exploring, with lots of folks visiting the site on their own smart-phone and tablet devices too. (to get an idea of how an EA or other para-educator might use educATe in the classroom check out this 90 sec. video).
Big hits were not only the training and support resources — videos, tutorials and quick reference sheets – but all the readymade scaffolded books and worksheets in pdf files. The Provinces and the other Social Studies themed materials were much appreciated. One EA’s comments from the morning group summed up a lot of what we heard, “… (With educATe ) even if I don’t have access to the computer with the AT… I can still download and print stuff I can use with the student. I love that!”
We had pre-enrolled all the EA’s, so they could not only check out the resources but actually download and save files they discovered and use them when they got back to the classroom.