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No textbooks for math and science

Varnett students will study math and science online this year but that doesn’t mean they won’t put pencil to paper.

The kindergarten through 5th grade students will be given notebooks to log their reports, ideas, projects or anything else related to the two subject areas. In effect, they will be composers.

“The students will have their own personal handbooks for study,” Ms. Dugar, the district’s chief academic officer, said Friday. The interactive notebooks will give students a sense of ownership and teach them to take greater responsibility over their learning. “This will be an additional resource to their online curriculum," Ms. Dugar said.

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Educators were in training this week so they will be able teach students how to use the books after they arrive on August 24.

Kindergartners, first and second grade students will use Kindles to study math and science and third through fifth graders will use laptops. The idea behind eliminating textbooks is to reduce paperwork and prepare students for the ever-developing technological age.

Teachers were also trained on how to teach math outside the classrooms. Students will go outdoors  to learn math as it relates  to measurements, shapes, counting and more, said Mr. Calimag, the instructional math coach at the Southwest Campus. This approach puts students in  real-life situations and extends their knowledge beyond the campus doors, he said.

Social studies will be taught online and from textbooks and the material will be complementary, said Ms. Jones, the instructional reading coach at Southwest.  “We will have the best of both worlds,” she said.

Photos by Mr. Calimag


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