by: 4th Grade Classes at Alta Vista & Southside Elementary Schools, Sarasota, Florida
teacher: Jessica Gardner & Kelly McWilliams
Close your eyes and IMAGINE everyone looking like everyone else. Now open your eyes and be thankful for our differences.
quote by: Janet Sunny Walker, Stuart, Florida
My name is Jessica Gardner and I am a 4th grade teacher at Southside Elementary School. My collaborator, Kelly McWilliams, is a 4th grade teacher at Alta Vista Elementary School. This year we both have piloted a digital classroom where our students use a Microsoft Surface tablet throughout the school day to access a variety of digital platforms available to Sarasota County students. One of our goals this year was to increase our students’ digital collaboration across schools. Since both of our schools are socially and economically different from each other we thought of no better way to combine our love of technology and art together in an Embracing Our Differences project. After studying the theme of diversity, students in both classes used a QR code generator app on their tablets to create their own personalized QR code. These codes were saved as images, e-mailed to the teachers and then we inserted all fourteen codes on a shared Word document using Office 365. This project allowed two classrooms from two different schools to collaborate on a single digital document without leaving the classroom. Once all the codes were added, we conferred back and forth about the simple, yet bold title.