The Holy Family Catholic School, in Fort Worth, Texas has chosen Hitachi Software StarBoards to advance classroom technology and provide students with a more hands-on learning experience. The school utilizes nine of the Hitachi FX DUO-77 model StarBoards along with the award-winning Hitachi CP-A100 3LCD ultra-short-throw projector as part of the Hitachi CPA100+FXDUO bundle.
Dr. John Shreve, principal at the Holy Family Catholic School, explained the factors that were considered when purchasing the Hitachi StarBoard compared to the other brands of interactive whiteboards. “We looked at many interactive whiteboard brands. We chose Hitachi because of four major factors; the durability of the board, ease of use, price, and the training and support we received and continue to receive,” stated Dr. Shreve.
Kimberly Pierce, 6th grade teacher at the Holy Family Catholic School explained how she is using the StarBoard everyday across multiple subject areas. “I use it in science class when I connect a handheld microscope to the computer and the enlarged image of the specimen is projected on the StarBoard. This technology has also proved to be an effective way of conducting lab exams. The protractor, ruler and stopwatch are great tools for math, and in language arts we use it for paragraph editing and sentence diagramming,” stated Mrs. Pierce.
The integration of the StarBoards into the curriculum was a smooth transition for the Holy Family Catholic School. “Initially, our teachers were a bit anxious. When the teachers had their initial preview of the technology, they were excited about the possibilities of how they could present lessons that would engage students and promote quality interaction. After one year of experience, teachers and students are working together to master the features of the StarBoard. I have witnessed student engagement like I have never seen before. Many students who were originally reluctant to respond are now excited about going up to the board to participate,” stated Dr. Shreve.
Wanda Styrsky, 4th grade teacher at Holy Family Catholic School, believes the StarBoard has been helpful for saving time in her lesson preparation. “Scanning infinite amounts of previously created work and being able to write and edit on the board is a beneficial tool that I now could not do without,” stated Mrs. Styrsky.
The student reaction to the technology has been overwhelmingly positive. “They absolutely love it. It empowers them to be more creative, expressive, and in control of their learning. They are more attentive and eager to participate,” added Mrs. Pierce.
“Those who are apprehensive receive help and encouragement from their classmates. I have yet to experience a situation where students were made to feel insecure about using the board,” stated Mrs. Styrsky.
The Holy Family Catholic School plans to integrate more StarBoards for the upcoming school year. “We plan on purchasing additional bundles for our classrooms this year. We’ve also been very blessed because parents and parishioners of our Church have provided generous donations to purchase the interactive whiteboards. Through events such as Back-to-School Night, our parents have been able to witness the learning opportunities that the interactive whiteboard technology offers,” added Dr. Shreve.