Technology has become an integral part of our lives; it provides tools for learning, productivity, connecting to others, and enriching our lives in many other ways. As a learning tool, technology can make a measurable difference in student interest, achievement, and attitudes. At Brookwood, students have a wealth of technological resources to assist them, as well as instruction in how to use these resources effectively and ethically. They develop the understanding that they can master new tools as they arise and empowered to play an active role in their own learning.
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Brookwood students learn by doing. In addition to the hundreds of available computers found throughout the school, all Middle and Upper School classrooms and science and music classrooms have interactive Smartboards connected to computers or AppleTVs, along with projectors. iPads, iPods, 3-D printers, digital cameras, wireless networks, award-winning software and productivity software tools are used to support curriculum and learning across all grades. Among other endeavors, students create podcasts of their creative writing, assemble voice threads online for collaborative art and poetry projects, develop videos projects with iPads, and have an opportunity to practice design thinking using electronics. Brookwood Middle and Upper School students use Google Apps accounts and create Three Ring digital portfolios.  These are but a few of the uses of technology at Brookwood.

The development of excellent keyboarding skills is also central to the technology effort at Brookwood. Brookwood has a unique keyboarding program, now entering its seventeenth year of use. Students use the Mavis Beacon keyboarding program to learn to type without looking at the keys. By the end of the fifth grade, the class average for all fifth grade students has been about 35 words per minute or higher for the last six years. Through collaborative research with a Harvard child psychologist, we have learned that as a result of our early learning keyboarding program, our students’ writing skills have shown measureable signs of improvement in quality and length, as well as increased editing.

Upon graduating, students have learned basic and advanced word processing techniques, as well as how to use spreadsheets, to work collaboratively online, to manage information on a computer, to effectively search for information using Google, to develop effective multimedia presentations through a variety of apps and media, to manipulate graphics, and to use the Internet effectively, safely, and ethically.

In addition to several computer labs, Brookwood has many laptop and iPad carts, several 3-D printers, a managed wireless network and broadband Internet access, digital cameras, scanners, robotics, and many award-winning software titles.  Supervised and filtered broadband Internet access is available everywhere including outside across much of Brookwood's property. The Eleanor M. DiCroce Library houses an eighteen-computer reference area, online library card catalog, as well as Internet access to more than 25 local town library card catalogs. In addition and in support of Brookwood's commitment to cultural competency, Brookwood utilizes numerous online blogs, video and sound hosting services.  For example, visit Brookwood's Global Classroom used by teachers to stay connected to our students when they travel. Or visit, Brookwood's online forum titled The Other Side of the Mason-Dixon Line for dialogue between Brookwood seventh graders and seventh graders at the Battle Ground Academy in Tennessee.

While Brookwood strongly supports the use of technological resources in its continuing commitment to children, we believe that it is a balance of teaching and curriculum that directs the most appropriate use of technology in meeting the needs of our students.

Technology Curricular Goals
In general, the Technology Department seeks to have Brookwood Students:

  • Master basic computer skills and applications, including keyboarding, the use of multimedia, object-oriented programming and the use of word processing, database, spreadsheet, web browser, and sound editing/manipulation
  • Practice valuable techniques and advanced skills for mastering the search for information on the Internet; develop competency in organizing and displaying that information, as well as evaluating and substantiating its validity and truthfulness
  • Acquire effective techniques for using both the Internet and telecommunications tools in a safe and ethical manner
  • Develop the ability to assess, interpret, and evaluate the impact of various advertising media messages on student attitudes, behavior, and decision-making
  • Develop a sense of confidence in approaching new technologies in pursuit of learning, problem-solving, expression, analysis, and exploration

Grade Level Curricular Goals and Focal Points
At each respective grade level, our goal is to have students:

Grade Two:

  • Gain introduction to word processing and manipulating objects in the word processor
  • Gain introduction to working with multiple forms of media using iPads and apps like Explain Everything, Book Creator and drawing apps
  • Learn to capture and organize ideas, create web maps and outlines using Popplet and other software tools
  • Introduce iPad skills in general, and specifically to produce media-rich projects

Grade Three:

  • Demonstrate proper care and use of computers and computer accessories
  • Improve word processing skills
  • Introduce and develop keyboarding skills
  • Deepen their understanding for using many different forms of digital media including voice and video
  • Continue to use many iPad apps to facilitate learning and subject-specific research

Grade Four:

  • Improve keyboarding skills
  • Improve word processing skills
  • Use Scratch programming software to communicate, express themselves, and solve problems individually and collectively
  • Gain introduction to Inspiration software for web mapping and outlining
  • Use word processing skills to create finished reports

Grade Five:

  • Gain familiarity with online risks, privacy issues, ethical behavior and online security
  • Use Inspiration software for web mapping and outlining
  • Develop keyboarding skills
  • Develop PowerPoint skills
  • Gain introduction to the networking environment and file servers
  • Improve word processing skills

Grade Six:

  • Explore aspects of media and Internet literacy
  • Gain introduction to and understanding of the Internet
  • Use iMovie and iPads to create digital media
  • Develop presentation/media skills
  • Improve word processing skills

Grade Seven:

  • Deepen familiarity with computer ethics
  • Deepen understanding of Internet safety and netiquette
  • Gain familiarity with management and evaluation of Internet information
  • Gain understanding of the web so as to reduce one's risks and improve one's use
  • Develop understanding of protecting privacy online
  • Differentiate safe from unsafe Internet resources
  • Gain understanding of phishing and other online and texting scams
  • Gain facility in protecting online privacy
  • Appreciate the risks and issues attendant on the use of social networks
  • Deepen degree of media literacy
  • Improve and further develop multimedia and iPad skills
  • Develop skills to use search engines and web browsers effectively
  • Gain understanding how to reduce the risk of cyber-bullying and the best strategies to respond to it when it happens

Grade Eight:

  • Develop acute understanding of the risks and issues inherent in use of social networks and apps
  • Gain understanding of risks that arise from the lack of privacy online and through smartphones
  • Gain understanding of the inherent risks that come with the use of smartphones and how to reduce those risks