Southern Cayuga Central School District
Congratulations to Heather Snyder, our October 2017 Feature Teacher. Heather recently became the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) Coordinator for the Southern Cayuga Central School District. Prior to becoming the STEAM Coordinator, she was a kindergarten teacher at Emily Howland Elementary School. Heather has been with the Southern Cayuga CSD for 19 years and has been in education for 23 years.
How has this teacher brought innovation to his or her classroom?
Heather’s kindergarten classroom was set up as a student-centered, inquiry-based learning environment. Students were required to collaborate with their peers, as well as work independently. She was the first kindergarten teacher at Southern Cayuga CSD to use the Seesaw digital portfolio app with her students. Using the Seesaw app, the children go to a “recording studio” -- consisting of a child-size couch, iPad, and oversized umbrella -- to read/record random sight words and print sight words that they listen to. This information is later checked by Heather for accuracy and follow up. The students were very eager to not only use the Seesaw app, but also wanted to read and write more knowing they could do it on the iPad
Heather has now transitioned into the STEAM coordinator role at Southern Cayuga CSD. Heather decided to revamp the old technology curriculum and bring it into the 21st century. This was a daunting task for her, but with the help of administration and a CNYRIC Technology Integration Specialist, she has got the beginnings of an innovative and challenging new curriculum. Heather realizes that in this day and age, not using the available technology would be a disservice to the students, so she wants to give them every opportunity to understand and use what they have available to create a better learning environment.
How have students and staff benefited from Heather’s technology integration initiatives?
Heather has been a leader with staff regarding Technology Integration at Southern Cayuga CSD. Other teachers on her team have come to her for assistance and she has helped them get started with using their iPads, as well as the Seesaw app. She is always willing to learn and try new things when it comes to technology.
Regarding student benefits, Heather has been able to teach her students not only how to use the iPads, but put the children in charge of their own assessments. This makes it so that there is less need for one-on-one individual student assessments. Her students were fluent with iPads and are well prepared to enter the first grade. Heather used iPads as much as possible in her classroom, in order to make sure her students were prepared to use technology as an effective tool for learning.
Is This You?
Are you the type of teacher who thinks about technology integration and new ways to enhance instruction, engage students, and make learning fun? Know someone who fits the profile? Recommend a "Featured Teacher" so we can recognize and celebrate great work in the area of instructional technology!