UW-Platteville receives $10,000 technology grant

Jessica Brogley and Dr. Lindsay Hollingsworth

PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — Thanks to a $10,000 grant from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, the University of Wisconsin-Platteville will soon have an opportunity to collaborate with Platteville School District to develop technology-rich lessons for publication on DPI’s WISElearn portal.

This winter, Wisconsin DPI opened a competitive grant for schools interested in contributing open educational resources, or OER, at the state level. The WISELearn grants, each up to $10,000, were designed to help Wisconsin educators create and share OER resources – free, made-from-scratch, instructional materials that may be edited and used for educational purposes.

In December, after several weeks of planning and discussions, staff from UW-Platteville and Platteville School District applied for the grant, with the intent to bolster lessons integrating technology. The grant proposal, “Creating Lessons Using Transformative Technology,” was written by Jessica Brogley, lecturer of education at UW-Platteville, and Dr. Lindsay Hollingsworth, assistant professor of education at UW-Platteville, in conjunction with Platteville Public Schools.

In late-March, DPI awarded UW-Platteville and Platteville Public Schools one of only 10 grants in the state. The grant plan is to create an OER consortium between Platteville Public Schools and UW-Platteville’s School of Education to develop, and globally publish, attributed open resources, supports and best practices in effectively integrating technology into the core instruction with the expectation that the final products to be published to WISElearn.

“This grant is important because it supports teachers in developing learning experiences that integrate technology in ways they haven’t considered before,” said Brogley. “Additionally, we are the only recipients in Southwest Wisconsin to receive this state grant. I like knowing that we are leading the charge and that DPI believes our work is important. This collaboration benefits UW-Platteville’s School of Education in that we are continuing to develop relationships with Platteville Public Schools and being recognized at the state level for improving teaching and learning. I’m really looking forward to seeing teachers publish technology-rich resources on WISElearn and knowing that there’s a ripple effect here.”

“We are honored to have been selected for grant funding,” added Hollingsworth. “Our project is designed to create ‘time and space’ for area teachers to design technology-infused lessons to benefit their students. I am looking forward to collaborating with the amazing teachers in the Platteville School District.”

Some of the lessons the Platteville School District hopes to develop include designing learning opportunities with virtual reality, creating interactive lessons using PearDeck, analyzing lab data with Google Sheets and developing a sequence for learning digital literacy in early middle school.

Kaye Henrickson, WISELearn OER curation project coordinator, noted that while the need for more research is clear, the impact of OER on PK12 education is positive and gaining attention and implementation across the country.

“These WISELearn OER Innovation Grants support the work of educators around the state to create, curate and contribute high-quality, openly licensed instructional materials to promote a more equitable approach to education,” said Henrickson. “Open access to technology-rich content allows educators to readily infuse much-needed digital literacy skills into classroom instruction, preparing students for positive futures. One of the most rewarding components of this project is witnessing collaboration of educators across the state to identify and create standards-aligned instructional materials that are accessible to all Wisconsin teachers and learners.”

For more information about the collaboration, visit: https://dpi.wi.gov/wiselearn.

High-impact practices, such as standards-alignment and personalized learning, are an important component of UW-Platteville’s 2017-2018 strategic work plan, which includes the institutional priorities of improving student learning, data-informed decision making, budgeting and planning, supporting student success through retention and recruitment initiatives, and campus climate.
 

Written by: Laurie A. Hamer, University Relations Specialist, College of Liberal Arts and Education, 608-342-6191, hamerl@uwplatt.edu

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