Our Approach

Redwood Day views the use of technology as integral to teaching and learning, and sharing what we have learned. Our goal is to provide our students with a portable set of skills, and to guide them to  understand the essence of a variety of technology tools. Throughout our curriculum they are exposed to different applications that can be used for the same purpose, such as different kinds of word processors and presentation tools. We provide many avenues for students to document and share their learning, including text, audio, video, and multimedia. We believe that publishing student work to an audience of their peers cements and consolidates learning.

Media literacy and critical thinking are necessary skills in our digital age; we provide an environment that is safe and monitored, yet challenging for students as they explore the online universe. Mistakes are an opportunity for the application of critical thinking skills and sparking intellectual growth; we provide access to the internet with moderate censorship. While our Internet filters are set to filter out many inappropriate categories of sites, some of the information available is controversial and may sometimes be offensive to some individuals. Our staff will make good faith efforts to monitor student use and create projects that minimize this risk, and teach kids to avoid suspect sites and quickly close windows with content that make them feel uncomfortable or may be inappropriate.

The Library and Technology departments are using Common Sense Media online as the source of our curriculum about Digital Citizenship. The site is a wealth of information for both teachers and families. This link takes you to family tip sheets about the language we are using in our lesson plans. Feel free to explore the whole site about the many issues we will cover with the students. Developing Internet etiquette is a long-term process that we visit continuously in core classrooms, the computer lab, and the library. It is a constant work in progress, rather than a discrete lesson unit. Thank you for your partnership in developing the next generation of responsible digital citizens.

Redwood Day recommends that student access to the Internet be limited to a common room in the home, such as the kitchen or the living room, rather than a student's bedroom. This may mean setting up a place for your student to do their homework in the common space.

Use of Third-Party Applications

Below is a list of third-party computer applications and web-based services services we plan to use in 2016-2017 that require student information in order to have functional access. Redwood Day may add to the following list of sites throughout the year, but notification will be made to families of any such changes. Redwood Day is in compliance with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), and requires all online services vendors to comply with COPPA. We annually review vendors use and privacy agreements to ensure continued compliance.

In the right column is a link to our Acceptable Use Policy. This policy is reviewed with students each year through our curriculum, and parents are asked to sign their consent. Please be aware that if you choose to opt out of access to third-party computer applications and web-based services, your student will not be able to fully participate in our program; many assignments are technology-dependent. We will work with your family to modify assignments as much as possible. The first seven systems listed below use the student’s name as part of the user name, and the student’s first and last names and their student ID is used by the site for account management.
  • Google Apps for Education is a suite of online productivity applications that also provides a collaborative platform for students to assign and mange student work. It is used in 4th-8th grades. We will look for opportunities to pilot Email this year in some grade levels. Access will be restricted and monitored. No student Google Apps for Education account may share a document nor send or receive email outside of our domain, except in certain closely monitored projects. GAFE Privacy Policy
  • Hapara Teacher Dashboard is an extension of our Google Apps domain that lets our teachers monitor and manage student use of Google Docs. Hapara Privacy Policy
  • TypingPal Online is a web-based keyboarding tutor. It is used in 3rd-6th grades. TypingPal Online Privacy Policy
  • ThinkCentral provides access to digital materials associated with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt math products for K-6. ThinkCentral Privacy Policy
  • Holt McDougal Online provides access to online versions of our math textbooks.  Holt Privacy Policy
  • Scratch is a programming language and an online community where children can program and share interactive media such as stories, games, and animations. Accounts created and managed by teachers for students in 3rd-5th grades are explicitly ID-neutral. Scratch Privacy Policy
  • TreeRing is our new yearbook vendor that allows families to create personalized pages for their student’s yearbook. TreeRing Privacy Policy
  • TinkerCad is web-based software used in our  “Inventor Studios” enrichment program. Teacher-created log-ins for students are explicitly ID-neutral. TinkerCAD Privacy Policy

Contact

For additional information, please contact Daniel Johnston, Technology Director via email or at 510.534.0804, ext. 246.