Tessco Wireless Journal August September 2014 Page 4 Wireless Journal August-September 2014

Product information and performance claims are provided by manufacturers. 4 Product information and performance claims are provided by manufacturers. August / September 2014 Wireless Technology Enhances Classroom Experience Through Mobile Device Use Submitted by OtterBox Belton Independent School District in Central Texas is relatively small in terms of size; however, it's big on ideas. It became one of the first districts in Texas to implement a broad mobile technology program - pairing an Apple iPad with each student at South Belton Middle School and Belton High School. Today, Belton ISD hosts administrators and educators from around the nation to share what they've learned - best practices that include infrastructure, commu- nication to parents, training for teachers and device protection from OtterBox. When planning started for a new middle school, the district decided to deploy iPads with each of the 735 students enrolled. Access wasn't necessarily in the cards for all students at South Belton Middle School. The school population consists of a relatively low socio- economic group, with 65 percent of the stu- dents receiving free or reduced rate lunches. The vision was to get a tablet device into the hands of every student at the school because greater access means empowerment for the children. "We wanted this to be a new type of school - a 21st Century School," said Terice Schneider, instructional technology coordina- tor for the district. "We want these kids to have the same access as other kids." That vision was realized through funding from a bond to purchase the technology, and teachers were instructed to incorporate the devices into everyday learning. Teachers have embraced the new learning tools and view them as a means to empower students to di- rect their learning. Seventh grade math teacher Nat Giambalvo recalls the days when he was stuck at a chalkboard, writing lessons and lecturing to his class. Those days are gone. Giambalvo uses apps to write and share his notes from iPad to iPad, to assign and collect homework and to get creative with a subject that has traditionally required a focus on copy- ing formulas rather than facilitating learning through exploration. "The 1:1 iPads have made it a whole new ballgame," he said. "The engagement levels are definitely a lot higher. I can send them a video with a lesson and within the lesson is the homework. They don't realize they are doing homework. I can take the boring math worksheets and incorporate it into a fun proj- ect or video. It's the same work, but now its interactive, and they're more into it." Many South Belton Middle School teach- ers have reported similar results - increased homework completion because digital worksheets cannot be lost, better one-on- one communication due to email access to teachers, and an overall increase in the a level of excitement about learning. Because of the success at South Belton, the district decided to roll out a 1:1 program at Belton High School as well. Between the two schools, pockets of classroom and 1:1 sets at other locations and those issued to teachers and administrators, Belton ISD has a total of 4,500 iPads deployed. Without a question, creativity and engage- ment abound throughout the district. However, when the program was in the early stages of planning there were plenty of questions and few answers. How will content be controlled? Is the IT infrastructure robust enough? What apps should be used? "The big question was how to protect them," Schneider said. "In middle school, you're probably the clumsiest you'll ever be." When news of the 1:1 program got out, the district received a number of protective covers to test. Schneider and team created a system Recommended Apps A few favorites from Belton teachers: Edmodo - Connects teachers and students with a closed network to track grades, dis- seminate homework and collaborate on projects. SyncPad - a digital whiteboard that allows teachers to write and share notes to the classroom projector and every iPad in the room, which students can screenshot for review rather than transcribe for review. UPAD - this handwriting/drawing app is a digital replacement for spiral notebooks. iAnnotate - teachers can distribute digital worksheets for students to complete and submit on their iPads. iMovie - great for project-based learning, students can research, collaborate, film and edit assignments. End-to-End Solutions Deliver Seamless Connectivity Across Campus Case study submitted by Ericsson As technology continues to trans- form our society , those responsible for our current systems of learning and education are facing overwhelming pressure to adapt. Education technology, connected learning and the rise of the unwired network is trans- forming the established concept of learning, educators' roles and even the definition of the "classroom". Through connectivity and mobil- ity, any space is a potential place for school work and learning, spanning voice, data and video communication. The virtual classroom complements the physical classroom and en- courages collaboration, especially in areas where distance and travel are factors and where a multitude of mobile devices come into play. Students and progressive educators, empowered by technology, are turning estab- lished models on their heads while new skills and educational platforms are redefining our systems and institutions. The Challenge Most colleges and universities have a been built over decades, with campus expansions, new dorms and housing facilities, athletic and performing arts centers and renovations. Growth and evolution are good things, but this makes deploying and managing technol- ogy a challenge. With volumes of buildings and variations in terrain, the ability to deliver a consistently high user experience is hindered. Different vendor solutions are deployed at dif- ferent times, varying equipment and software versions are scattered across the campus and different management tools are in place to monitor and control these disparate solutions. Today, campus life is interwoven with tech- nology leading to the explosion of mobile de- vices on campus. Smartphones, tablets, game consoles, wireless routers, social networking, and high-bandwidth content consumption like video streaming are realities for schools of all sizes. With more connections thirsting for more bandwidth, the importance of a network that can meet this growing demand today and prepare for even more in the future is crucial. The user experience is often impacted as well since multiple logins for network connec- tivity may be required depending on where they are on campus. And, from a traditional voice standpoint, features and functionality available may differ, including the way staff members need to dial extensions from one side of the campus to the other. With all these factors at play, IT departments are tasked with delivering the network and systems to keep up with this rapid transformation and to ensure that the network is stable with minimal service interruptions. The Solution Ericsson has a broad range of solutions to connect people and places across the cam- pus, to help deliver coverage and connectivity indoors, outdoors, with management tools that bring together divergent platforms, simplifying management with a single, cohesive campus solution. These solutions help educational institutions to deliver on their bold vision to foster knowledge across physical and virtual environments. From the dorm to the classroom and all across the campus, Ericsson delivers cost-effective, feature rich, easy-to-integrate and manage solutions for single location to multi-campus environments. Ericsson's com- prehensive, end-to-end solutions consist of: - Ericsson's full line of iPECS network switches are the foundation of the entire network infrastruc- ture for a campus. From basic workgroup switches to managed PoE+ switches to sophisticated Layer 3 aggregation switches, Ericsson has products that are competi- tively priced, reliable, easy to install and maintain and are optimized to work with Ericsson solutions. (continued on page 19) (continued on page 26)

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