Technology plays a vital role at St. Mary’s Academy—supporting the dynamic curriculum that is a hallmark of education in each of our classrooms. Every student from Junior Kindergarten through grade 12 enjoys the benefits of advanced technology:
- Enterprise-class wireless network coverage in every building on campus
- Mobile Chromebook and iPad carts in the Lower School
- One-to-one iPad and Chromebook program in the Middle School
- One-to-one laptop program in the High School
- Web-based library system
- Web-based student information system, allowing parents and students to follow timely classroom progress
- Interactive Projectors in all classrooms
- Fiber optic network backbone
- Google Apps for Education
Robotics: Lower School beginnings through High School winnings
Students are intrigued by technology and fearless in applying new skills in robotics. Starting in Lower School, girls and boys learn to work together to brainstorm, build, and program LEGO NXT Mindstorms robots. Continuing in Middle School, students engage in more sophisticated elements of NXT programming and building, ultimately working towards participation in FIRST LEGO League competition.
Robotics participation in the High School has soared significantly since its inception. Twice participating in Regionals for the BEST competition, the all-girl robotics team ventured into FIRST competition in 2015.
Winning ALL-STAR ROOKIE Team in the Colorado Regional, the team earned entry into the FIRST World Championships in St. Louis.
Introducing young women to careers in which women are significantly underrepresented, our High School students excel in a variety of fields. Whether computer, mechanical, robotics, engineering, or using their creative strengths and skills in public speaking to market the robot, SMA girls thrive in this vital territory.
Working with team mentors and sponsors from Lockheed Martin, NASA, and Case Western Reserve University, we are creating future leaders in these fields. This includes working on a team that has extensive goals and real deadlines. The FIRST experience is invaluable for these students, and working in an all-girl environment establishes leadership as well as support roles as part of the workforce, leading to a future that benefits our greater community.
Mouse Mischief, a high school technology club
Maintaining the technology the SMA faculty and students use is a priority. Our team of student workers, nicknamed “The Mice,” serves many purposes. It lightens the tech workload for faculty and staff while allowing students to gain hands-on knowledge about technology and troubleshooting.
The Mouse Program creates a workspace in which students can emerge as teachers, and the free exchange of ideas becomes less about uni-directional teaching and more about collaboration.
Supervised by the Director of Instructional Technology, Tanya Komandt, students participate in a variety of tasks throughout the campus including hardware service, software development, training, problem-solving, coding, and much more. Here’s a glimpse at what the Mice complete on a regular basis:
- Build a class Google site and train the teacher on functionality
- Diagnose connectivity issues with desktops and laptops
- Create electronic flipcharts for interactive classroom use
- Research and teach various iPad applications
- Source the best software or application for a teaching goal
- Train teachers on Google Classroom
- Introduce teachers to new video tools
- Train K-8th graders on introductory programming activities during the national Hour of Code week
- Test cabling for defects and run network cabling
- Create ethernet cables for desktop computers