Students and teachers praise technology in schools - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Students and teachers praise technology in schools

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"I definitely think I'm performing better as a student because of technology," says Braidon Nutting, a sophomore at New Tech High School.

This is New Tech High School's second year. As they finish up the first half, Principal John Kennedy says each student has access to a laptop and the technology is paying off. "They're using it more as a productivity tool rather than a fun and games type thing."

He says they learned a lot in the first year. Now students and teachers know what to expect, and how to best use their technology, from creating podcasts to doing research, monitoring grades and chatting online with classmates.

"It's just better. It's more collaborative, it's more creative, it's a little bit deeper thinking, it's more refined," says Kennedy.

And to schools just adopting technology, he says it takes time to adapt. "Certainly there are times when our students get distracted by technology. They're teenagers, you gotta guide them back to where they need to be and where their focus needs to be."

But after working through kinks, even teachers say they see a change in students.

"They're being more interested again, curious and that was something that was missing in the regular schools without technology," says teacher Heather Nimon.

They say students have more opportunities with technology and they can share their work.

"They're showing what they've done not just to teachers and students, but also to outside influences," says teacher Alex North.  

And students are on board too.

"I feel like it's really helping, like I can go check my grades whenever I want or see what I have to turn in and when due dates are," says Bashar Seleh.

"I feel that it gives us an extra step ahead of other schools," says sophomore Krystal Atkins.

"It gives you more opportunity to see what the real world's like," says student Diana Gonzalez.
FOX28 talked with Northridge High School as well. They're finishing up their first semester with laptops. Assistant principal Dan Hile says students seem more engaged in learning, but it's still too early to tell if use of laptops is enhancing their performance.

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