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5-7-2021 Congratulate Mrs. Tammy McDonald, 2020-2021 Winner of a Lytle ISD Innovative Classroom Grant!
Junior High teacher, Mrs. Tammy McDonald is the type of teacher who loves to explore innovative instructional practices such as blended learning, flexible seating, project-based learning, and enhanced technology integration. She had a vision for what her classroom would look like with new furniture, seating, and technology options that allowed her students to move, interact, explore and collaborate with more energy and enthusiasm. Because of this, Lytle ISD selected her as one of ten winners of our 2020 Innovative Classroom Grant Award. She had $10,000 to fund her dream classroom.
Watch the video to see her dream become a reality. Here's how Mrs. McDonald put her vision into words:
"Redesigning my physical learning spaces will lead to brain-friendly learning and will encourage students to be more engaged. Flexible learning spaces provide modern learning experiences and this meets various needs, such as small-group collaboration, large-group instruction, and individual study or review. The environment will be innovative, relevant, and personalized to the student’s needs. This type of environment lends itself to building relationships as students work in collaborative areas. Students will be able to be independent and develop some of the life skills they’ll need for success after high school. Students in my class are currently working in a blended learning environment. Students are familiar with workstations and how to accomplish a task within different groupings. With the new environment and my creative experience with workstations and blended learning, students will achieve more than ever before. I am a firm believer in keeping the focus on what’s really important: the students. The students who we share our classroom with don’t know life without constant connectivity, WI-FI, and a global audience. Outside the windows of my classroom is a fast-paced, ever-changing world full of choices. How can we expect our students to solve problems and make choices independently if we constantly solve their problems and make choices for them? My classroom environment will be conducive to open collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking. This simply cannot be done when kids are sitting in rows of desk all day."
I know you'll enjoy the video, but even better, stop by Mrs. McDonald's classroom and you can experience for yourself what her students are saying, "It is my favorite room - nice and comfortable, and it feels like home." Apparently, students think Mrs. McDonald AND her classroom are, "Way cooler than most."