New technology enhancing education at Tyrone High School

In the constantly changing world of technology, the Tyrone Area High School is trying to add technology to the classroom.
This week, students and teachers from TAHS spent three days working with staff from Juniata College to learn digital video and bring that technology into the school system.
“This is a program that we thought would be valuable to the students and teachers of TAHS,” said principal Rebecca Erb. “We had students from our academic academy and teachers come in this week and learn about digital video. Our grant writer, Dr. Sam Dean found a grant to fund this program, and this will bring cutting edge technology to the classroom.”
In the three days of training this week, the teachers and students broke into small groups and received introductions to cameras and tripods, learned shooting tips, learned storyboarding, exporting the video to VHS or DVD, learned lighting techniques, editing and completed a short film.
“This is an offspring of Juniata College’s Extreme Video Camp,” said Erb. “It is a very aggressive program. Through our grant, we purchased the same equipment that was used at the camp in Juniata. We plan to use the technology to help the educational process.”
It wasn’t tough to get students in for three days in the summer to learn the technology.
“I placed a sign up sheet before the end of the school year,” said Erb. “In a matter of a day or two, we had the class filled.”
Teachers Kerry Naylor, Todd Camarata and Dave Fernandez, participated in the instruction with seven students.
“I think the instruction went well,” said Naylor. “I learned a lot and I believe that the students learned a lot as well. It was nice to get in right away, get our hands dirty and make a video.”
One of the students assigned to the same group as Naylor, Cynda Ormsby participated in the Juniata College camp earlier in the summer.
“Cynda helped us out a lot,” said Naylor. “As technology evolves, many teachers have to put their pride aside and take a step back and learn from the students. Kids are quick to pick up new technology. Sometimes we have to switch roles and learn from them.”
There are many ways that the video technology can be added to enhance learning in the classroom.
“From an English standpoint, we have had the students read an act or scene from a play and ask them to act it out in the classroom,” said Naylor. “With the digital video, we can actually video these projects and learn from it. This technology would be great for something like that. Todd (Camarata) has mentioned to me that in the social studies classes, when the kids are learning about the political process, they could video debates, learn to film campaign ads. The only thing that will limit what we can do to use this technology to enhance the education of our students is the imagination of the teachers and students.”
As more students get involved in the digital video technology, there are many ways the technology can be added to the education process.
“We plan to use this technology in the future to video the morning announcements sort of like a morning news for the students,” said Erb. “We are limited right now because we are learning the technology, but as more students and teachers learn, our possibilities are endless.”