TULSA, Oklahoma—March 22, 2010—One of the largest school districts in Oklahoma is adding PASCO scientific’s award-winning SPARK Science Learning System to science classes at all nine of its high schools, PASCO announced today. The adoption of the state-of-the-art data collection and analysis technology is part of Tulsa Public School District’s commitment to provide students with the opportunities and experiences to ensure their success in a competitive global environment.
“The all-in-one, mobile SPARK Science Learning System is a perfect fit for our ‘digital native’ students because it provides them with the opportunity to engage in authentic science experimentation in real time,” said Adrienne Elder, Tulsa Public School District’s science specialist. “As educators we are well aware that immediate feedback is critical to the formative assessment process which leads to faster and deeper data analysis and communication including appropriate transfer and application.”
Providing the framework for the SPARK Science Learning System is SPARKscience, an authentic, research-based learning platform that integrates sensor-based data collection, interactive visualization and data analysis, instructional content and assessment. It’s designed around SPARKvue, an integrated learning application that promotes real-time analysis and direct manipulation of data, and promotes student reflection and discussion with built-in annotation tools. SPARKvue supports a myriad of classroom technologies, including the SPARK Science Learning System, Windows- and Mac-based computers, interactive whiteboards, netbooks and handheld devices such as Apple’s iPod touch and iPad. It enables classes to use SPARKscience in a mixed-technology environment common to most schools.
“Tulsa Public School District has made an enormous commitment to students by giving them the tools to live and work in a world that places a premium on knowledge of science and technology,” said Eric Johnson, vice president of sales and marketing at PASCO. “SPARKscience lets students experiment and make discoveries using the same digital methods used by real scientists. By integrating SPARKscience into its curriculum, the district is giving all students the advantage.”
The district cited several reasons for adopting SPARK:
- It’s intuitive. The large touch screen and accompanying icons are attributes of the SPARK that allow for ease of use and maneuvering of the system.
- Curricula. The system’s breadth and depth of curricula materials, including subject specific laboratory units, journaling and snapshot features.
- Data collection. With the SPARK data collection, analysis and laboratory reports may be saved, printed, and/or transferred via USB devices to computers equipped with SPARKvue software, providing educators valuable options for reviewing and critiquing student work in a timely manner.
- Live online training, professional development and web support from PASCO Educator Resources.
“The Tulsa Public School District serves a highly culturally diverse student population,” said Elder. “We chose SPARK because it is designed for all levels of learning,” said Elder. “It’s our mission to provide quality learning opportunities for every student, every day, without exception. Our adoption of SPARK is one of the ways in which we are honoring our commitment.”