Students at Woodland Elementary are learning through hands-on activities and are constantly engaged in classroom assignments.

Most recently, students have been participating in project and activity based learning units, which line up with the teaching technique known as vertical alignment, and match required Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills curriculum that all teachers within the state must meet. 

Project based learning units give students a hands-on way of storing information through each grade level. Woodland students learn through multiple strategies, including math stations in which students participate in groups on multiple assignments. Students also deliver Powerpoint presentations in science class and use iPad apps to learn how to spell.

“One of the best things to look for when you go into a classroom is student engagement,” said Dr. Colleen Netterville, principal at Woodland Elementary School. “It means every student is accountable for something, and nobody is just sitting there.”

For example, Netterville said that when one student is at the chalk board or dry erase board doing a math problem, the students have a bigger chance of losing interest in the lesson because they are bored. If all of the students are engaged at once by using dry erase boards at their own desk to do the math problem together, they retain the information more efficiently.


Read more in Sunday's Graham Leader.