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Connellsville students get 'clickers'

| Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, 9:01 p.m.
A demonstration of the new clickers was made available to members of the Scottdale Bank and Trust team so they could see firsthand how the new system works that they were able to help to provide for the Connellsville Area School District. From left are Bullskin Township Elementary Principal Chuck Michaels and Larry Kiefer, Don Kiefer and Lynn Kiefer Anders of Scottdale Bank and Trust. Marilyn Forbes | For the Daily Courier

Ever striving to improve and update the educational experience for students in the Connellsville Area School District, the Falcon Foundation has aided the district in equipping every elementary student with new Class Response Systems, more commonly known as “clickers.”

The small hand-held clickers allow the students to directly interact with lesson plans, projects and testing that the teachers present through Smartboard systems.

Using the new systems, the teachers will be able to see not only how students answer questions, but who answers correctly.

“This will eliminate a lot of paper and produce instant results,” said Bullskin Township Elementary School Principal Chuck Michaels. “The clickers almost work like a little cell phone. They just type in their answers or for the younger grades, they can answer yes or no — and teachers can do all this without the paperwork.”

About 700 clickers were purchased for the elementary schools through the combined efforts of money received from an EITC Grant from Scottdale Bank and Trust, the Falcon Foundation, the Bullskin PTG and the district.

“We wanted to do this and decided to get the funds to do first through sixth grades and get enough for all those students,” Falcon Foundation President Ken Jaynes said.

The teachers in the elementary schools will all receive training on the new systems that will include one-on-one interaction with specialists from Turner Technologies.

The new Class Response Systems are just the latest in the technological advancements that the district has implemented in its classrooms.

“All of the technology that I have received in this classroom in the last year has completely changed the way that I teach,” said Bullskin Township first-grade teacher Anissa Stafford.

The district hopes to have the new systems in place and operational within the classrooms by late winter.

“I think that this is an exciting addition and I am sure that it will be rewarding to the students,” said Lynn Andres of Scottdale Bank and Trust. “Education is very important.”

“We have been a part of this for the past eight years and it is always encouraging to see the advancements in educational opportunities for the kids,” said Larry Kiefer of Scottdale Bank and Trust.

Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.

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