Digital Citizenship is an integrated part of our work with students in Middle and High School to develop graduates who use technology both wisely and well. Lessons in our middle school digital citizenship curriculum focus on such topics as oversharing and online cruelty, internet privacy, cyberbullying and the power of words, and the digital footprint we create as we use social media. As students begin high school, we work with them to begin to curate and monitor their digital footprints as their online and social media presence grows. In addition to information literacy and academic honesty lessons throughout our curriculum, students explore digital citizenship lessons about online hate groups, fake news, the online aspects of modern relationships and the ways in which companies track and act on the data that can be gathered about all of us online. These lessons are developed and re-envisioned each year with input from our 8th and 12th grade students.
Our Upper School program in Programming and Computer Science spans both Middle and High School. Beginning in Middle School, students can take three levels of Computer Programming in the Python programming language, beginning at an introductory level that requires no background knowledge. Any high school student may take our Computer Science survey, Foundations in Computer Science. We offer high school students three levels of Computer Programming in the Java programming language - for those students who are interested, this sequence can culminate in the AP Computer Science exam, though taking the test is not the goal of these courses. Qualified high school students may also take our capstone programming course to participate in the ZeroRobotics competition. ZeroRobotics students work with the International Space Station to program a satellite in space.
Every Upper School student uses a laptop computer to support their learning. Our Middle School students are provided a Chromebook device by the school for use both at home and in the classroom. Beginning in 9th grade, students choose their own device to bring for classroom use, allowing families and students to pick the device that works best for each student's learning as well as for each family's home digital needs. We use technology as a tool to further our educational goals rather than an end in itself. We work to foster students who are adaptable and flexible users of technology, exposed to as wide an array of digital tools and softwares as possible. As both a Google and Microsoft Office 365 school, we work to help our students understand the "grammar" of both online services and softwares so that they are prepared for the fast-changing technology environment that will define their futures.
Technology in the Classroom
The following are a few of the digital tools we use in our Upper School classrooms:
- G-Suite for Education (formerly Google Apps for Education)
- Google Expedition and Augmented Reality
- Office 365
- Dreambox Math
- Adobe Creative Cloud (includes Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator,
- Audition, AfterEffects, Premiere, Dreamweaver, and Animator)
- Noodle Tools