Submitted by Lauren Williams on Thu, 08/15/2013 - 1:50pm
SnapKeys, creators of the revolutionary Si Evolution alphabetic keyboard, and Avalon Elementary school successfully conducted a pilot Android keyboarding project with a class of second graders. SnapKeys, based in Israel, first approached OCPS two years ago when they were unveiling their keyboard technology at the International CTIA Wireless Convention. Despite the distance between the company headquarters and Orlando, SnapKeys has returned to work with OCPS in a variety of ways through the Partners in Education program each year since. SnapKeys introduced the pilot program to second graders and they adapted to the technology very quickly.
“This is the youngest group of students that we have ever had using our keyboard and they adapted so quickly using it for just 30 minutes a day for three days,” says Ryan Ghassabian, SnapKeys Business Developer.
Keyboarding and word processing skills are critical when demonstrating proficiency in writing as part of the Common Core State Standards for English and Language Arts. The Florida Department of Education currently recommends incorporation of word processing as early as second grade, and OCPS is moving towards this goal.
“Our students are poised to become “world changers” and we must prepare them for that role with teaching tools that maximize the benefits of technology,” said Julie Zaldana, the Avalon Elementary second-grade teacher whose classroom was chosen for this pilot project.
Snapkeys also met with third, fourth, and fifth graders in an after-school program to teach them the keyboarding platform. Those students showed the same excitement and interest in the project.
The SnapKeys partnership with OCPS is a unique and successful one that has brought much needed digital resources to area schools. SnapKeys hopes to implement the Si Evolution keyboard in many more OCPS schools in the future.