NBC Learn K-12 Subscriber Spotlight: NBC Learn as a Versatile Resource
Technology is a large part of the middle schools at Woodbridge Township School District, and Lindsey Kowalsky is the driving force. She is busy working towards her master’s in reading, but she has found time to help develop a digital literacy course for this year, and pilot a new course around the Congressional Medal of Honor.
“One of the greatest things about NBC Learn is the versatility, and one of nice things about teaching different classes is that I can use it in different ways,” Lindsey shared. She teaches digital literacy, language arts, and the new Congressional Medal of Honor class.
Lindsey won one of the Voya Unsung Heroes grants in 2013, and with her grant she helped her students build an “app” about World War II and the Holocaust. She leaned on NBC Learn was a valuable research tool for the app.
Her passion for serving her community led her to become the advisor for the National Junior Honor Society for Iselin Middle School. Lindsey’s students do a Service Learning Project, and she demonstrates how communities help each other by using NBC Learn videos such as #HashtagLunchbag. These videos spur the students to explore ideas for how they can support their own community.
Lindsey also uses the resources available on NBC Learn K-12 to provide background knowledge across all her classes. For her Digital Literacy class, she uses videos to teach the history of the internet, from internet artifacts such as the lawsuits around Napster to current events like the feud between Apple and the FBI.
“Reading is one thing, but a lot of times students don’t have the background knowledge in that subject, so the footage from the videos enhances their ability to visualize,” Lindsey added. Chasing Lincoln’s Killer is one of the many books read during her Language Arts class. She incorporates videos and documents about Abraham Lincoln and his assassination to further her student’s knowledge of history and provide cross-curricular content. She also draws on The Writers Speak to Kids videos to enhance discussions of memoirs with her students. The Jeff Kinney video is always one of her classes’ favorites.
Lindsey tells her students, “I want you to learn, but really what’s one of the most important things to me is that you are good citizens and good people, and they learn to give back to their community and those around them.” NBC Learn provides the background and ideas for her students to grow into the responsible community members that Lindsey envisions them to be.