EducationSuperHighway at Tech 2018 with kids with tablets

Digital Learning in Action: TECH 2018 Showcase

If you have any doubts that digital learning is transforming education, look no further than these presentations from students at Illinois’ TECH 2018 event this year:

  • Robots in the Art Room
  • Cause and Effect Rube Goldberg Machines
  • #VBC: Virtual Book Clubs
  • Using AR to Visualize Research Findings

For the second year in a row, our team had the privilege of attending this annual event that showcases outstanding technology projects from students across Illinois. TECH 20XX, now in its 28th year, is a conference organized by Illinois Computing Educators (ICE) that gives students the opportunity to display their technology-related school projects to elected officials, business leaders, and the general public. During this day-long conference, the State Capitol buzzes with excitement as students proudly display their work on projects from Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) to 3D printing, robotics, design, and more.

Student Showcases at TECH 2018

Not only do students display the technical knowledge they’ve gained through these projects, they also share how technology has helped boost their collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking skills. At Lincoln Trail Elementary, for example, 5th grade students were engaged in a project-based learning assignment to create a 3D-printed prosthetic arm for a kindergarten student with Rett syndrome. Together with their classroom teacher, a physical therapist, and computer teacher, these students co-created a solution for a real-world problem and they’ve already begun exploring other ways that using technology can benefit their community.

Schools in attendance at TECH 2018 also shared how access to devices has been a game-changer for learning and instruction. As students at New Holland-Middletown Elementary District 88 remarked, “In our classroom, we use Chromebooks for many things. We code on Tynker and Code.org. We use them for math and spelling practice. We have blogs that we use for writing. We also use our devices for research and writing activities. We love when we get free time to explore!”

Similarly, a school leader at Lincolnshire Prairie-View 103 noted, “The iPad empowers students to take more of a stake in their own learning and provides quicker access to information.”

“We aim to provide our students with a relevant, technology-rich learning environment, designed to prepare them for their present learning environment, their academic futures, and the world in which they live.” – Lincolnshire Prairie-View 103

With the growing use of devices and more technology in the classroom, school leaders nationwide are ensuring that their classrooms have scalable networks, adequate bandwidth, and robust Wi-Fi connectivity to make digital learning possible. Events like TECH 2018 illustrate how high-speed Internet helps students and educators access unlimited resources, opening up incredible opportunities for teaching and learning. We look forward to seeing future projects from TECH 20XX representing the voices of every region in Illinois.

Learn more about how we work with state leaders to accelerate students’ digital learning opportunities.