Richland-Bean Blossom Community School Corporation (R-BB) has been a leader in Indiana's K-12 Public Education shift to digital learning (eLearning) as a means of engaging students in the instructional process. At R-BB, digital learning is not just about providing students with a device. Digital learning offers students technology that can support them to better grasp concepts and skills, while also teaching students how to effectively and responsibly harness technology in their own pursuit of knowledge, experiences and skills they can develop and use as innovative thinkers and life-long learners.
Since the 2011-2012 school year, R-BB has been a 1:1 device to student school corporation at grades 6-12 first through the Apple iPad, and now with Chromebooks. Through the incorporation of the 1:1 device, 6-12 teachers have developed authentic collaborative and creative learning opportunities for students across core and related arts courses, and we look forward to utilizing their experiences and areas of expertise to begin developing the same types of learning environments at the elementary grades, K-5.
"I never teach my pupils. I only provide the conditions in which they can learn." - Albert Einstein
RBBCSC's Vision for Digital Learning
The Mission Statement of the Richland-Bean Blossom Community School Corporation is to "...provide students with an education that promotes responsible citizenship, develops critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity." In order to achieve this mission on a daily basis, our educators need to provide students with learning opportunities that support the development of these skills - skills our students will need as they work toward realizing college and career goals.
Our vision is to utilize technological devices to provide students with learning opportunities that spark their creativity and engage them in collaborative work as active participants and contributors in their education. As our students enter our schools from kindergarten to high school, we want to make sure they are "powering up" and engaged in their learning in authentic and purposeful ways, and we believe expanding our 1:1 device initiative to the elementary grades, K-5 is the next step toward realizing this vision for our students' learning.
Current Structure of the 1:1 Device Initiative and Digital Learning:
Currently, R-BB students at grades 6-12 are issued a Chromebook each school year to gain access to digital and online content/coursework, to work collaboratively, and to utilize creative tools for displaying their mastery of skills and content. Students access course content and engage in collaborative learning with students and staff through Learning Management Systems. Our educators employ a variety of Learning Management Systems including Google Classroom.
Future Goals for Digital Learning and STEM Education:
R-BB has identified the following goals regarding its Digital Learning and STEM Education initiatives. Digital and STEM-based learning structures are designed to support and compliment one another. The following goals have been established to guide our corporation's continued work in providing students with the skills and experiences necessary for college and careers beyond the classroom.
If you would like to learn more about R-BB's STEM program - STEAM as we refer to it, highlighting our committment to the arts - please visit our R-BB STEAM page. If you have any questions regarding these initiatives, please contact Jaime Miller, STEAM Coach and Program Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or Troy Guthrie, Innovative Learning Specialist, at email@example.com.
Goal #1: Once all students have access to 1:1 devices, we will explore the possibility of e-learning day opportunities throughout our district.
Once each student has access to a device the district will work in conjunction with the Indiana Department of Education to help build e-learning day opportunities both into our schedule and as an alternative to weather cancellations.
Goal #2: We will provide students with learning opportunities that spark their creativity and engage them in collaborative work as active participants and contributors to their learning.
At the start of the 2016-2017 school year, students in grades 6-12 transitioned to a new 1:1 device (Chromebook). In our work with the new Indiana Academic Standards for College and Career Readiness (CCR), we want to provide support for our students as they become more deeply engaged in the objectives outlined by the new standards for literacy and mathematics. The Chromebook provides students with the opportunity to engage in the Google ecosystem in a hard-keyboard format. The Google ecosystem - the ways in which students and educators collaborate and create with Google applications - will allow students ease in accessing instructional content and work, as well as provide opportunities for greater collaboration with their classmates and educators.
Goal #3: We will engage students in problem-based learning (PBL) opportunities through STEM-based learning structures (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics).
In December 2015, the Richland-Bean Blossom Community School Corporation was awarded a sizable and generous grant from the Monroe County Redevelopment Commission to develop and implement a STEM-based learning structure for all K-12 students attending R-BB Schools. STEM education brings many exciting opportunities to students, staff, parents, the R-BB community and Monroe County. This grant will span a six year period and will be used to develop professional learning structures for educator training in STEM Education, to purchase and implement instructional resources to support STEM education, and to develop the technological and physical structure to support STEM Education. Through the development of STEM-based learning structures at R-BB, students will be afforded problem-based learning opportunities through their core curriculum courses and STEM-based curricular modules in all grade levels K-12.