Avon second graders learning around SMART Tables

Seven Avon schools bought SMART Tables with grant money.
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Avon - There's a new look in the classroom at several grade schools in Hendricks County. Some new technology is delivering some old lessons in a captivating way.

Small groups of second graders in an Avon classroom spend part of their day rotating through learning stations. But lately, the most popular stop on the circuit looks more like a video arcade than a school room.

"The SMART Table is an interactive technology tool to manipulate and navigate and work together," said Michelle Frossard, Avon Schools technology specialist.

Since the beginning of the year, the students have been hovering over the latest technology that provides a virtual series of math problems and English lessons that don't feel like schoolwork.

"You get to play games. Adding and subtract games," said Alex Garcia.

"You're supposed to trace the words and circle the vowels," said Jamez Bellamy.

Frossard applied for state grant money for the technology.

"You know, the classroom teacher has said 'I can't compete with technology,' so this is an awesome tool for the kids," she said.

Sycamore Elementary is one of seven grade schools in the Avon School District that have received SMART Tables. There are 30 SMART Tables in all being paid for by a grant from the State Department of Education.

Teachers say the digital lessons go well beyond teaching reading, writing and arithmetic in a new way. Second graders are also learning how to work as a team.

"This is an opportunity to practice the cooperative learning strategies, the communications skills, consensus building, so that it's not just my game, but it's our game," Frossard said.

Avon Schools will evaluate the program by comparing the grades of these students at the end of the school year to last year's results, to determine whether the new wave of SMART Tables leads to smarter second graders.