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Dedicated IT Orientation Day for Year 6 Students

 

At the end of 2016, Mount St Benedict College held its first ever ICT Orientation Day for Year 6 students who were preparing to transition to high school.

 

Year 7 2017 students attended the College to spend a fun-packed day learning about the different technology in use at the College and received their College laptop.

 

Working closely with Year 7 teachers, the College introduced the additional orientation day (the Year 6 students had already attended a general orientation day in mid-November) in response to the variation in ICT skills experienced with previous Year 7 cohorts.

 

Technology is used widely across the College and the approaching summer holiday break gave students time

to familiarise themselves with the systems and software available to them. Students and their parents were positive about the initiative, reporting that it provided an exciting head-start into their high school journey.

 

Supporting the day were a small group of dedicated staff who, despite being officially on term break, spent the day providing instruction and support to the students. 30 Year 9 students also spent the day with the incoming Year 7 students assisting them in their different sessions. These Peer Support Leaders were an invaluable asset supporting this exciting event and an example of the College’s strong pastoral care system.

 

The Orientation Day followed a similar format to a normal school day. Six sessions (or periods) ran throughout the day with girls moving between classes around the College. In the first session, students received their new laptop device and spent some time logging in and familiarising themselves with the hardware. Important aspects were addressed, such as how to look after the device and more importantly how to look after yourself when using the device. A high proportion of the students were unfamiliar with a laptop or Windows, having made extensive use of iPads and tablets in their primary schools.

 

The five other sessions enabled the students to spend time getting to know and experimenting with email, the College Learning Management System, applications such as OneNote and Microsoft Office as well as spending time learning about Internet Safety and services that are available from home such as ClickView and Office 365.

 

Towards the end of Term One in 2017, some four months after the laptops were issued to students; the College

surveyed the girls who took part in the day. The feedback was extremely positive:

 

  • 94.3% agreed or strongly agreed that they were comfortable using their tablet/laptop in the Classroom
  • 74% agreed or strongly agreed that the ICT Orientation Day provided them with the confidence and the skills to use their College laptop
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    The College is planning the next ICT Orientation day for Year 7, 2018 students and is also planning to run a similar event for new staff to the College.