Kari Wardle, IdahoPTV’s teacher ambassador, has seen her share of classrooms this year.
As one of only five educators nationwide selected for the inaugural PBS Teacher Community Program, Wardle has been helping teachers in rural Idaho school districts incorporate technology and digital media in the classroom. She’s also been helping them gain access to professional development through virtual field trips, webinars and teacher meet-ups.
Recently, the Twin Falls Times-News reported on Wardle’s work in the Wendell School District. They caught up with her on “Tech Talk Thursday” as she demonstrated creating and sharing digital documents using Google Docs — a tool teachers can use both to collaborate with other teachers and to give students quick feedback on assignments submitted digitally.
If you’re curious what the long-range results of Wardle’s efforts look like in the classroom, check out these photos sent in by a teacher in Marsing.
Over the summer, Wardle taught “coding camps” to teachers in southwest Idaho utilizing ScratchJr, an animated coding app that helps students create interactive stories and games. She discussed with Marsing teacher Ken Price ways to implement coding into the curriculum.
Price reported back a few months into the school year that students were enthusiastically embracing their creative coding skills.
“What you see in these pictures are kids writing code to depict scenes and characters found in Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims,” Price said. The book, a historical novel for young readers written by Rush Limbaugh, tells the story of a middle-school history teacher named Rush Revere who travels back in time to the deck of the Mayflower.
“In one picture you have a third-grade student writing code to produce his idea of the Mayflower,” Price said. “The other one is another third-grader who created the characters Liberty the talking horse and Rush Revere in his coding work.”
“Thanks again for all your support in advancing the learning of Marsing youth,” Price said. “Now you see in these photos that your efforts are bringing about some amazing activities.”