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Posted December 19, 2013

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Chaparral Teacher Uses Promethean Board All Day Long

First-grade teacher Heather Ortiz is this month's TIG/APS Education Foundation Innovation Award winner.

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Teacher Heather Ortiz uses the Promethean board in her first-grade classroom at Chaparral Elementary all day long.

She uses the technology to teach phonics, word blending, math concepts and reading. She uses YouTube songs and video clips to introduce and reinforce concepts. She uses Activotes to assess skills. She creates flipcharts to use with the Treasures reading program. The list goes on and on.

So, it seems appropriate that Ortiz earned this month's TIG/APS Education Foundation Innovation Award.

"I feel that it is important to use technology as a teaching tool because it is an interactive way to keep the students involved in their learning," said Ortiz, who has been teaching first grade at Chaparral for 14 years.

She said the integration of technology into the classroom not only keeps learning fun for students, but it also streamlines prep work. "Then I can give my students all of my attention and put my energy into teaching instead of scrounging for materials to teach with."

Technology Integration Group and the APS Education Foundation announce Innovation Award winners each month during the school year, providing a $2,500 prize to a district teacher who is advancing education in the classroom through the use of technology, including Promethean ActivBoards. A $100 cash award also is provided.

Ortiz said she hopes to use the $2,500 to purchase iPad minis for her classroom to integrate into her Daily 5 centers. "I also will use these first few iPads in collaboration with my AppleTV so the children can take control of the board and share their work and strategies with each other. Eventually I would like to write a grant to complete my purchase for a classroom set of iPads so my class can work one on one with them."

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