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Ed Tech Star of the Month

January 2018 - Melissa Madden Truncale

Melissa Madden Truncale
What Do You Teach?
3rd grade self contained
Where Do you Teach?
Clark Elementary School
How Long Have You Been Teaching?
5 years

How Does Educational Technology Play a Role in Your Classroom?
It gives students not only the opportunity to learn new concepts but also applying them using different strategies. Students are able to show me how they know what they know in a variety of ways.
Students using technology
How Do You Find Technology in the Classroom Helpful?

I feel like it increases student engagement. It brings their thinking to a whole new level. Information learned stays with them. They become an active member of their own learning.
What Is Your Favorite Piece of Classroom Technology? Why?
Google Drive is definitely my go to. Everything we do on other apps on the iPad, or even work done in class can find its way to Google Drive to add to their learning product. I also use Minecraft to contribute to their end of the year project. Building a community in Minecraft brings to life their thoughts and imaginations. They have to imagine, plan, and create (with a team) their specific responsibility of their class Utopia using their higher-level and critical thinking skills. Watching all the parts come together is amazing to watch. Their end of the year presentation floors me every year!

What Is On Your Technology Wish List For Your Classroom? Why?
Having a set of 6 robots for class use would definitely be on my wish list. I would really like to teach my students how to program. Being able to continue to promote and encourage that higher level thinking in another way would be really be beneficial to my students. It would give them another outlet to show their learning.
What Do You Love Most About Teaching?
I love my kids, and I enjoy the daily interactions I have with them. Watching them grow throughout the year brings such joy. Watching them become independent thinkers and learning to question is exciting! I want them to love learning. Giving them tools to be able to do that is pretty rewarding. I truly love my job.
Students using technology

Nominated by:
Robyn Sewell, Educational Technology Specialist - Elementaries "Melissa goes above and beyond using technology to engage her students in the instructional classroom. Melissa teaches the gifted and Talented class and provided a secure Mindcraft platform for her students to create the class Utopian City. Students worked together to create a city-wide government council and used technology to build campaign ads and promote their city. Students thrive in the virtual world of google drive and share work daily with Mrs. Truncale. She thinks outside the box and makes old tasks new using the technology. "