IT Integration Walls
An IT Integration wall is a great way to support student use of technology for learning in the classroom. You can take many different approaches to creating the wall. One approach is to create a poster of Just Right resources for your grade/students. Here’s an example from a Grade 2 classroom.
Just Right Resources
In elementary school, we use the concept of “Just Right” apps and websites to help children understand that some websites are appropriate for children, while others are not. Students use bookmarks and QR codes to get to websites appropriate for use in the classroom.
This Grade 2 teacher included instructions of how to use Dropbox, as well as QR codes to resources for the current unit. The space can be as big, or as small as you want it to be. Involve students in the creation process, especially at older grades. If you or your technology coordinator has created instructions for using technology resources, incorporate these resources into the integration wall.
Managing the Wall
Implement the wall at the beginning of the school year, so that students get in the habit of solving problems themselves, and with the help of their peers. Have sections of the wall that will be useful throughout the year, as well as more dynamic sections that change with the unit or term. Here are some ideas of how to involve students:
- Have students submit a few websites that can be added to the wall.
- Model the process for deciding if a site or app is Just Right, and involve students in the decision.
- Invite students to create instructions for common tasks, to post on the wall.
- Provide space and opportunity for student to identify their expertise and offer assistance to peers.
- Track how often different resources are used on the wall, to know what to leave and what to replace. It could be a student’s job to analyze the use of resources.