Jefferson-Intermediate adopts Blend-Ed teaching model

FAIRBURY, NE – Jefferson Intermediate School has incorporated Blend-Ed learning into students’ daily routine. Fifth graders are engaged in what they’re learning through integrating technology as part of everyday lessons.

“Our fifth grade teachers are trying this out this year,” principal Sarah Roesler said. “They are using some alternative seating. They have marker board seating, and they’re using technology to integrate some of the activities.”

Using tools like Quizlet, Nearpod, Kahoot, and Wonders online resource on Google Chromebooks, students actively participate and interact with one another as they’re learning.

Sophie, a fifth grader this year, says art is her favorite subject. She’s especially enjoyed the marker board tables.

“Especially when we don’t have scrap paper,” she said. “The marker boards are helpful, because like, you can write all of the problems and if you don’t need it anymore, you can just erase it.”

Karen Dux, Fairbury Public School’s Tech Integrationist, says giving students the ability to move about the room and select their own seating has helped increase both engagement and lesson completion.

“Station rotation is one model where the students just move from station-to-station doing different activities,” Dux said. “Some are online, some are face-to-face. Time or place or pace doesn’t stipulate how students learn.”

‘BlendEd’ is a statewide education initiative that’s being adopted at many schools across the state, including Freeman and Thayer Central. There are several different models, but the overall goal is to combine traditional face-to-face classroom methods with online delivery and participation.

Becky Wright, one of three fifth grade teachers at Jefferson Intermediate, has noticed an immediate difference with this teaching model.

“Student engagement has definitely increased,” Wright said. “The kids are more engaged in the lesson, they enjoy it a lot more, and they love all of the different features that it comes with. It’s awesome to hear the collaboration that’s going on between the kids and their excitement, and the excitement among the teachers, too with all of the different things we get to do with the kids.”

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