At Hausner, we view technology as a tool that supports and complements instructional methodology, balancing screen and non-screen time. We use a wide variety of hardware and software that is developmentally appropriate at each stage, both within the classroom as well as in the Design Studio and Design Lab.
Along with our library program, our instructional technology program builds specific academic technical skills that are integrated with core curriculum to enhance project-based learning and digital literacy. Instructional Technology is designed to expand and enhance the core academic curriculum in general studies (including math, science, social studies, and English), as well as Jewish studies and Hebrew. Just a few examples include: Students creating videos and quizzes in Hebrew class, making movies in Jewish Studies, creating digital books, creating programming games.
Instructional technology is embedded as a part of the curriculum and not a separate subject, making it a seamless integration, whether integrating a software tool such as Google Apps or whether designing for a 3D printer.
HAUSNER CODE FEST
Hausner participates in Computer Science Education Week by hosting Hausner Code Fest! This year, our Code Fest will be held on the Hausner campus on Thursday, November 29 from 5:30 – 7:00 pm. Join us!
Lower School Technology Program
Digital citizenship forms a core piece of the instructional technology, with lessons starting from kindergarten through eighth grade using the Commonsense Media curriculum and with support from Parents Place. Our students growing up in a digital world, are exposed to various screens all around them from a very young age. We believe it is our responsibility to inculcate good digital etiquette and safety in the students from a very young age so that they can grow up to be responsible people, both in person and in the online world. We also work on integrating the digital etiquette with Jewish values.
Middle School Technology Program
In middle school, we offer a 1:1 device program that provides on-demand access to technology. Students have dedicated time to learn and gain expertise in specific technology skills to help them succeed in their academic courses. Critical site evaluation skills, Internet searching skills, graphic organizers, and proper citation are stressed so that students are able to research and write effectively. And students utilize many different computer programs and related technologies—including digital cameras, green screen recording equipment, and audio recording equipment—to help them create multimedia projects as part of their coursework.
Elective & After-School Technology Opportunities
Additional instructional technology opportunities are provided in electives and after school programs.
Hardware and Software in the Classroom
Classrooms are equipped with Apple TV devices and projectors for direct instruction and to enable teachers and students to share work with the class. Cloud-based computing allows students to communicate and collaborate with their teachers, other students, and Hausner’s twinning school in Israel. In addition, students use a variety of technology to create multimedia projects using iPads, digital cameras, green screen equipment, and audio-recording equipment. And students use electronic resources online through iPads, Mac laptops, and Windows-based desktop and laptop computers.
INTEGRATING SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING, AND MATH
As a school situated in the heart of Silicon Valley, we recognize that our students are inhabiting a fast-changing world. Our STEM program – which integrates science, technology, engineering, and math curriculum – is designed to help them navigate that world and contribute to an ever-growing body of knowledge. While we teach science, technology, and math as distinct disciplines, we find they come together most powerfully when incorporated into larger, dynamic, student-driven projects throughout each grade. Even though, we don’t call it STEAM at Hausner, with the “A” representing the Art component, art is an integral part of many of these projects. After all, scientific drawings are something that students learn early on in their lives and carry them through.
The STEM program incorporates the “Maker” education component, Design thinking and the SEL components (Social Emotional learning). The latter goes hand in hand with maker education. Maker education enables students to see STEM across the reading and writing curricular areas as well to make it a true PBL integration.
What does our STEM program look like? For kindergarten through 2nd grade students, it means being steeped in experiential learning, including digging for “dinosaur bones” as part of a larger unit on anatomy, analyzing our campus recycling program for efficacy and work to improve it, and researching sustainability as a part of their study of insects and life cycles. In 3rd to 5th grades, lessons focus on students becoming innovators and communicators. They design cardboard arcade games; build bridges that are strong and aesthetically pleasing; and conduct formal experiments in groups.
In middle school, science classes are an integral part of our core academic program. Students investigate climate change and local means to reduce carbon emissions, create future organisms using the tenets of evolution and adaptation, and design Rube Goldberg machines that exemplify how energy is transformed into different forms. Technology is part of their everyday experience, thanks to the range of devices available, 3D design and printing, our fully-equipped science labs, and most importantly, to our nurturing of a design thinking mentality. Students learn how to make projects using the sewing machines, the Carvey, and incorporate several electronic components and computer science learning including but not restricted to microbits, Raspberry Pis, Little Bits, Arduinos.
We pull our science and engineering standards from the Next Generation Science Standards, which were developed by the National Research Council, National Science Teachers Association, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. These standards match Hausner’s philosophy to follow student curiosity within a guiding framework of strong performance-based outcomes.