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PBS To Air Apple TV Series For Educators


Integrating technology into the classroom is the theme of six programs produced by Apple Computer, Inc. that will air on several Public Broadcast Services (PBS) stations beginning this month. The Imagine II series, designed to demonstrate how technology can enhance both the teaching and learning process, is also available for purchase by educators to enable its use as a staff development tool.

"PBS is pleased to offer this important staff development resource for teachers nationwide," said Sandy Welch, executive vice president, PBS Learning Ventures. "Imagine II is a series that teachers of all grade levels and subject areas will find valuable. It answers the many questions teachers have about how to improve student learning by using computers in the classroom."

Series Addresses Technology in the Classroom

Imagine II provides educators and parents with an in-depth look at how solid teaching practices can be enhanced with technology. It demonstrates how the introduction of technology into classrooms can significantly increase the potential for learning, especially when it is used to support information access, collaboration, and the expression and representation of student's thoughts and ideas--the very skills necessary for living and working in the 21st century.

The heart of the series contains real-life stories from educators who have experienced the opportunities and challenges of teaching and learning with technology. Each half-hour show focuses on a specific theme, as follows (see addendum for details):

-- How Computers are Changing the Way We Teach and Learn -- Enhancing Curriculum with Technology -- Technology for Enhancing Language Skills and Literacy -- Multimedia--Exploring the Possibilities -- Networking--Beyond the Classroom Walls -- Cyberclassroom--Now and in the Future

"Training teachers to effectively integrate technology into their curriculum, to feel confident and enjoy using technology, is as important as the technology itself," said Patricia Montgomery, senior director of Worldwide Education Marketing at Apple. "Imagine II is designed to demonstrate how technology is used in education today, and to inspire new ways of teaching and learning in the future. This series is intended to assist staff development and facilitate the innovative and effective use of technology in learning--both in school and at home."

Much of the content presented in this series comes as a result of more than a decade of research in Apple Classrooms of Tomorrow (ACOT), an ongoing project that studies the impact of technology on teaching and learning. ACOT is a collaboration between public schools, universities, research agencies, and Apple. Now in its 11th year, ACOT remains the longest running research project of its kind; its findings have become an important resource for educational experts and leaders.

To Order the Imagine II Series

As schedules vary throughout the U.S., educators and parents are encouraged to contact local PBS stations to determine when the Imagine II series will air in their local area. To order the six-part series in VHS format, educators can call 1-800-800-APPL. Cost for the Imagine II series is US$59.99, plus tax and shipping.

The Imagine II series is part of the Bring Learning Home Alliance which is committed to enhancing teaching and learning with technology. Bring Learning Home Alliance members include Apple, PBS, Scholastic, National Geographic Society, and Computer Learning Foundation.


How Computers Are Changing the Way We Teach and Learn

Surveying the many uses of educational technology, this show includes segments in which students develop a multimedia project on local history, collaborate on a literary investigation, and conduct an archaeological investigation via the computer. In addition, teachers discuss the impact of technology on learning, as well as the shift in classroom roles it can create.

Enhancing Curriculum with Technology

Chronicling the work of educators who are integrating technology into their curriculum, this show includes segments in which the computer plays a dominant role. Segments include a primary teacher progressing from computer novice to enthusiast; chemistry teachers and students experimenting with a computer-based probe; kindergartners using computers for language development; and high school students exploring curriculum that integrates technology with four content areas.

Technology for Enhancing Language Skills and Literacy

Examining the many different settings in which teachers use technology to encourage communication, this show includes segments from an elementary-grade English class, a Japanese immersion school, an ESL classroom, and the Santa Fe Indian School. In each segment, the teachers explain how working on computer-based projects helps students improve their language acquisition and communication skills.

Multimedia--Exploring the Possibilities

Demonstrating what's possible with multimedia--the combination of video, sounds, pictures, animation, and text--this show includes segments in which students use computer-based tools to capture information, examine and sort it, and combine it to communicate what was learned. A segment on virtual reality shows how students might use this new technology to take computer-based "field trips" without actually leaving the classroom.

Networking--Beyond the Classroom Walls

Following students on educational odysseys beyond the classroom, this show focuses on the impact of communications technology on the classroom. Segments include students participating in an electronic pen-pal program between two New York City schools; conducting research projects using the Internet; and collaborating via the Internet with scientists who are exploring Mayan ruins.

Cyberclassroom--Now and In the Future

Combining snapshots of today's technologies with glimpses of what's in store in the future, this show includes segments that address the changing roles of teachers and explores new approaches to technology staff development. In futuristic segments, teachers and students solve problems with technology tools that are already in use on the Internet.


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