In 2003, The York School created our Department of Learning, Innovation and Technology and quickly became a leader in innovative and meaningful integration of technology across the curriculum. Our teachers are continuously searching for new ways to enrich their subject areas with engaging tools and learning experiences. To that end, The York School invests heavily in professional development for teachers and technology support staff as well as the equipment necessary to support learning and growth across the board.
Technology in the Middle School
Located in a fully "wired" state-of-the-art building, the Middle School continues to integrate technology in innovative ways while ensuring that students and faculty use these tools proficiently and responsibly. Students have constant access to the resources they need, including a secure, robust and wireless LAN, numerous printers, 3D printers and scanners, as well as digital cameras, programmable robots, voice recorders, digital probes and tablets. We also equip every classroom with a mounted digital projector, interactive whiteboard and audio equipment. Wireless access points throughout the school ensure connection to online encyclopedias, databases, news services, global communications and video-streaming in every room.
Learning Anywhere, Anytime: When exploring options for technology in the classroom, we focus on ways to enrich the IB inquiry method and to empower students and teachers to access the full potential of their imaginations from anywhere at any time. Here is how that technology progresses throughout the Middle School years:
Grade 6 & 7: For the 2020-2021 academic year, we will be supporting learning with technology by loaning all students across grades 6 & 7 a school-owned Chromebook. As an exceptional school for a modern world, our capacity for change made us one of the first schools in Canada to offer a one-to-one laptop programme and now, thanks to the generosity of donors, even more of our students are able to participate.The Chromebook is easy to use and can be managed and supported remotely by the school IT Team should a hybrid model of online and in-person learning be necessary due to COVID-19 or other unforeseen circumstances. Students will receive their Chromebook in the first week of school, and orientation will be provided at that time.
For students new to the Middle School, the Grade 6 Design Course will be used this Fall to assist all with technology skill development as well as support new students as they familiarize themselves with our teaching and learning platforms.
Grade 8: New Grade 8’s will enter into our student-owned laptop programme and can find ordering information here. For 2020-21, existing York School students entering Grade 8 (rising 7th graders) will continue with their student-owned laptop already supported by our IT team and school software.
Powered by Google, Supported by Blackboard: The York School is powered by the Google Suite of educational apps and tools, as well as the Blackboard Learning Management System (LMS). This toolkit gives our students, teachers and staff everything they need to stay connected and supported through technology no matter what form the school year may take. Google accounts and apps can be accessed from anywhere, and in the Fall students will receive school-managed course folders for Google Drive that serve as their primary personal storage for all academic materials. Blackboard further supports this connectivity as a learning portal that provides students with personalized access to unit materials, assignments, research tools and course announcements.
I.T. Support: Our success as innovators requires a high degree of technical support. We have resources in place to ensure that all of our programmes run smoothly.
A help desk operated by dedicated IT staff that is available year round for software and hardware support and computer repair.
Technology and Learning Specialists who guide students and teachers through technology initiatives, issues and projects.
Specific technology classes and individual sessions to assist students with a wide array of issues and processes.
The school invests heavily in professional development for classroom teachers and technology integration specialists to ensure that their skills and knowledge are current.
We take responsibility for assisting students as they navigate through the complexities and challenges of their online experience by developing their digital citizenship. The York School provides onsite hardware repairs and software support for students 12 months of the year. Support can be engaged by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Digital Citizenship Resources
The York School’s Wellness team and Learning, Technology & Innovation Department created Digital Citizenship Resources which provide best practices and address risk factors involved with children on social media.
At school, we see many wonderful educational and community-building opportunities through social media and incorporate them into our classrooms when we can, but we also ensure students from a young age understand the responsibility that comes with having an online presence. This is especially salient in the Middle School years, when students begin to have greater exposure to social media and other web-based platforms.
If you have any specific questions about social media and your children, please contact Director of Learning, Innovation and Technology, Justin Medved.