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Students at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann

Students at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann

Over 1, 200 students at eight local schools in Wicklow will participate in the Wriggle 1:1 mobile learning programme this coming academic year. They will join over 7,000 students in 80 schools throughout Ireland with Wriggle ‘digital’ schoolbags, using mobile devices and digital textbooks in place of traditional textbooks.

Five of the schools begin their partnership with Wriggle this year with first year students at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann, Kilcoole; St. Kevin’s Community College, Dunlavin; Coláiste Chill Mhantain, Burkeen and Gaelcholáiste na Mara, Arklow joining the Wriggle 1:1 mobile learning programme.

Following the successful roll-out of the programme last year, incoming first years at Dominican College in Wicklow Town will join the second year students at the school on the Wriggle 1:1 mobile learning programme. Similarly, St. Gerard’s School in Bray is entering their third year, with all Junior Cycle students now using Wriggle ‘digital’ schoolbags.

Brand new school to the Greystones area, Temple Carrig, offered parents the choice between Wriggle ‘digital’ schoolbags or books.

Principal at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann, Shane Eivers commented, “We live in a high-tech world. Technology is changing rapidly and is happening in every sector of working life. Traditional learning for students consisted of copying from a board or book, listening to teachers talking for a long time or taking notes while teachers talk. The introduction of the iPad as a teaching and learning tool comes at a crucial and important time in Irish education with the introduction of the new Junior Cycle Student Award. The iPad affords students the opportunity to be creative, inquisitive and more self directed and independent in their learning. Students are already digitally focussed outside of the classroom and, with the iPad, will be more engaged in their learning in class. Digital media is the means by which students communicate, collaborate and learn on a daily basis. The iPad will not be just an eBook. It is a tool to promote critical thinking and problem solving. It will motivate students and provide them with the opportunity for higher achievement in their exams. Teachers at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann are really looking forward to the challenges this initiative brings to their teaching and the positive impact it will have on student success.”

Beryl Furlong, Director of Education at Wriggle and Wicklow native commented, “We are delighted to be working with so many progressive schools in Wicklow this year, as they continue or begin their journey with Wriggle and 1:1 education. We live in a digital age and school leaders, teachers and parents are quickly realising the benefits of integrating technology into teaching and learning. It is particularly important now in light of the new JCSA curriculum which will place significant emphasis on digital technology.”

Established in 2012, Wriggle is a 1:1 mobile learning initiative that transforms the teaching and learning environment in schools by putting new technology and engaging content into the hands of every student. Wriggle has created a complete package to provide each school with everything they need to make the move to digital textbooks on mobile devices, catering for both students and teachers. Wriggle provides the mobile devices; access to digital textbooks and interactive content; professional development for teachers; comprehensive support and expert advice on ICT planning for schools.

Furlong continued, “The advantages are numerous – interactive, up-to-date content to engage students and increase attainment; the ability to cater to different learning styles and rates of progression; it allows for greater collaboration, instant feedback and fosters important life skills – not to mention the schoolbags are a lot lighter. Essentially 1:1 mobile learning allows students to acquire and develop what have become essential skills for the modern workplace and community.”

Wriggle is a subsidiary of Irish IT managed services company Typetec.

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