Today's students are growing up in a world where technology will continue to play a prominent role in their lives. At Pembroke Hill, we believe that developing technology skills is important for students.
Technology instruction is integrated into the Pembroke Hill core curriculum in all divisions. Our approach incorporates opportunities to build digital literacy skills with tools for students to develop habits and behaviors that lead to a balance between time spent wired and unplugged.
When considering whether or not it is appropriate to incorporate technology into a lesson plan, faculty prioritize solutions that allow for and support:
From kindergarten through sixth grade, students take digital literacy classes. With curriculum guided by Common Sense Media, these classes teach students to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly in the digital world. Students learn parts of a computer, networking and the cloud, Internet browsers, searching, email and online communication, digital footprint, privacy and safety, creator's rights and basic coding.
In seventh-12th grade, digital citizenship lessons are incorporated into the health and wellness curriculum where topics focus on social media, bullying, conflict resolution and online privacy and safety.
Beginning in seventh grade, middle school students can enroll in computer science electives including:
- Broadcast Journalism
- Digital Art
- Exploring Technology
- Scratch (programming)
Upper school computer science courses include:
- AP Computer Science
- Web Design & App Development
- Computer Architecture & Server Design
- Introduction to Python
- Introduction to Java
- Introduction to Robotics
- 3D Printing & Design
- Computer Graphics
Pembroke Hill encourages the development of 21st century skills through:
- Classroom iPad access for students in early years-second grade and available at a one-to-one ratio for students in third and fourth grade, available at school only
- One-to-one iPad access for students in fifth through 12th grade, available at school and home
- Chromebook carts available for classroom use at the request of faculty in lower school and Chromebooks available to be checked out by middle and upper school students
- Technology and innovation coaches serving as resources for faculty and students
- Email accounts for students in fourth-12th grade encourage proper email form and etiquette
- Seesaw, a student engagement app, is used as a student portfolio and assessment tool in early childhood and lower school. Seesaw simulates a social network where students can interact with their classmates, faculty and family members through the app
- Veracross, the school's information management system, allows students in fifth-12th grade to access homework assignments, class schedules, directories, and other information
The lower school iLab is a makerspace where technology and engineering meet. The lab is equipped with its own 3D printer, green screen, Legos for engineering, design and robotics, and much more.
The middle school makerspace features a 3D printer, Lego robotics materials, four desktop computers with color printing capabilities, and a drop-down robotics board. The room is used by the robotics class and for the 3D printing unit of the Exploring Technology elective. Middle school has hosted hands-on maker projects like creating a pocket flashlight, a light-up card with copper tape and LED lights, sewing an owl ornament, and even some molecular gastronomy!
The upper school Computer Innovation Room is designed to be a home for the Computer Science program and upper school robotics team. Built for multiple types of instruction, the lab mixes stationary desktops, laptops, and iPads with space for student-owned devices.
The First Lego League is a Lego robotics program designed to excite students about science and technology. In August, the league shares details for the coming season's challenge, that includes creating a robot to perform specific tasks, as well as a real-world scientific problem that the team must try to solve. The PHS lower school teams, the Pembrotics and the Raiderbots, meet weekly after school to prepare for the qualifying tournament, held in December. The teams that advance from that tournament will participate in the official challenge in January. Participants must be nine years old by Jan. 1, 2019 in order to compete.
Offered as an exploratory elective, robotics uses information and skills taken from Robotics 1 and applies them to new problems. The projects are designed to expand programming ability, increasing teamwork and problem-solving skills. The challenges are based on the First LEGO League and include in-house competitions between teams. Students also have the opportunity to explore various careers related to coding, programming, and robotics.
The Robotics Team is focused on competing in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC). There are many facets to this competition and students may choose to participate in specific areas. Some of those are: robot design and build, programming, public relations, accounting, graphics design and computer graphics, web page design and build.