Technology Helps Lead The Way In Hummel's Classroom

By HEATHER POHLABEL
Daily Globe Staff Reporter

SHELBY - This week's teacher spotlight is Dowds Elementary fourth grade teacher, Jennifer Hummel. Hummel was recognized by administrators for her use of technology in the classroom.

Hummel received her Bachelor of Science in Education from The Ohio State University and her Reading Endorsement from Ashland University. She then went on to pursue her Master of Education in Gifted and Talented Education at Ashland.

Hummel has been teaching in Shelby since 1999. "I've been in every building except the high school," she explained.

"I started at St. Mary's teaching preschool and small group enrichment. In 2004 I started at Dowds halftime working with struggling readers. From 2005-2011 I taught gifted and talented half time in various buildings in the district and three of those years I also taught gifted and talented in Plymouth half time."

"From 2011-2013, I was the librarian at Central," Hummel continued. "I was also an art teacher and Title1 teacher at one time or another. I started teaching fourth grade in 2013."

Out of her many different roles as a teacher, Hummel noted she loved preschool. "It was perfect, as I was just starting out," she said. "I am still in communication with several of the parents from those very first years. However; I really love what I am doing now. Being part time all of those years allowed me to be a mom and have a job I enjoyed, but I am very happy being full time in the classroom now as my boys are growing up. The timing was perfect," she relayed.

In the classroom, Hummel, as well as her fellow fourth grade Dowds teachers, Mrs. Barnes and Mrs. Smith, use Google drive.

"It is a file storage and synchronization service," Hummel explained. "We use it for file sharing and collaborative editing with the students and each other. It allows the user to access their files and documents from any computer.

"The three of us also use web based programs with the students," Hummel continued." EasyTech is a self paced technology curriculum which helps students learn technology skills. The district has also made myskillstutor (math fluency practice), raz-kids and storia (online books and comprehension practice) available to us. My students are able to login and use all three of those sites. I've also implemented the iPads that we have."

Hummel has purchased or created lessons that involve QR code scanning. "I've also created what I call iPad quests, where the students have a set of questions they have to find the answers to on the iPad. I've also used the iPads during guided reading as a follow-up to what we read about the previous day. If we read something we want to know more about or don't understand, I have the students look it up on the iPad and then we talk about their findings during our next group reading time," Hummel explained.

Hummel noted the students respond well to using technology in school. "I can pretty much get them to do anything if it involves the Chromebook or the iPad; they absolutely love using either of those devices, no matter what they are using them for! The problem is we only have 18 iPads and they tend to get monopolized and they are hard to get in the room," Hummel added.

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