The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

School Columnists

November 1, 2012

Edgewood's new forensic class gives students hands on learning while conducting scientific investigations

ASHTABULA TOWNSHIP — There are many changes at Edgewood this year, the most predominant being the Pilot Program. “The district wanted to do some action research into how the use of one-to-one technology in the classroom affects teaching and learning,” said assistant principal Nick Orlando. “There is also a research component of how the use of eBooks in place of traditional text books would impact the classroom and student achievement.”

Several different math, science and English classes are using the iPads while others have lap tops. The school has provided students with these devices that are always with the students, even outside of the classroom. A few other classrooms have access to iPads and lap tops in the classroom and are using them on an almost daily basis. Another option Edgewood is exploring is a “Bring Your Own Device” where students may use their personal cell phones, tablets, laptops, iPads, etc., within the classroom.

Senior Carrie Pozum said, “It (the Bring Your Own Device program) is a good experience. I felt like we got to explore more options and it served a purpose in the class.”

The program will continue into next semester and depending on data collected from the students and teachers, the program may continue/expand into next year. “

It is too early to tell at this point, but we are eager to review student achievement data and feedback as it comes in,” Orlando said.

Also new to Edgewood is the forensic science class, a half credit science course that covers the most fundamental aspects of the fancy forensics work done on TV. This includes fingerprinting, blood splatter analysis, crime scene /eyewitness basics etc. Students design and conduct scientific investigations, as well as use IPads as part of the pilot program at Edgewood to learn about forensics. The class is being taught this year by Beth Simpson. The forensic science class is very unique compared to traditional science classes. When the students come in to class, they log on to their schoology accounts via IPads and complete the daily CSI challenges that are uploaded to their accounts; these challenges involve critical thinking and problem solving from their class curriculum. Students are also using the FACES program, which is used in actual investigations to generate a representation of suspects from eyewitness accounts and is used to create the “WANTED” posters for the show, “America’s Most Wanted,” on Lifetime.

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