Audrey Carey, district elementary supervisor of Indian River, oversees the Technology Advancing Proficency in English Language Learners Program (TAPE), which focuses on English Language Learners in 2-5th grade. The program integrates iPads, SMARTboards, and PCs so as to provide individualized and interactive educational opportunities. Professional development includes professional learning communities where teachers discuss student data and curriculum alignment.
“Education is a lifelong gift that educators must approach with quality, care, and innovation.”
Elementary Instruction Supervisor
In her own words…
Excellent public education is important because children are our leaders of tomorrow. Education is a lifelong gift that educators must approach with quality, care, and innovation.
I became involved in education because I had an excellent role model — my mother — who taught special education for over 35 years. She showed me that teaching was more than instruction, it is about investing in EACH child and treating them like the “gift” they are to the world.
We are all educators because we never cease to learn and are inspired by those special moments when we see the thrill of success of learning in the eyes of our students.
Through the Technology Advancing Proficiency in English Language Learners (TAPE) Program, I have witnessed teachers become leaders, parents enhance communication between home and school, and students raise academic and language proficiency to prepare for the 21st Century. The program focuses on English Language Learners in 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades, utilizing innovative uses of integrating technology in instruction. The use of iPADS, SMARTboards and PCs provide individualized educational opportunities, and serve as a tool that will promote collaboration and will create interactive learning for English Language Learners.
TAPE is innovative and unique because technology is the universal language that reaches across language and instructional barriers. Combined with a focus on differentiated instruction, technology integration, professional development, data collection, and evaluation present throughout the TAPE program, students increased technology access and were provided with collaborative learning opportunities to raise achievement, and increased language proficiency.
The program benefits Delaware’s students because while these technological advancements are not an end in themselves, they can serve as effective tools that can enable educators to better serve their student populations.
The most exciting thing others can learn about this approach is that the TAPE grant targeted students’ academic growth. Also, teachers began to communicate and take on leadership roles within the grade level, then their building, and then at the district level. They become models for true technology integration in instruction, with a focus on differentiation. The school built a community where parents became more involved in education where language was once a barrier. Parent nights and classroom visits added to the success of community building.
Pushing the envelope means never underestimating students and exploring new and innovative ways to reach ALL students.