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      New school puts iPads, laptops in students' hands

      In just two days, students at the new River Oaks elementary school will test out new technology techniques in the classroom by using iPads and laptops.

      Technology specialist David Bell says some 400 iPads and laptops will be in rotation, about one for every two students.

      The school will be a pilot program for the district. Teachers say the goal is to eventually get one of these into every student's hand.

      The school also has the latest in high-tech bulletin boards. These new interactive smart boards are in every classroom, so teachers can pull up a student's work from a laptop onto the smart board and work through a problem.

      Plasma TV's line the hallways so students will see the latest news and accomplishments of their classmates.

      Teachers are also using social networking with a social network called Edmodo, basically Facebook but for a classroom.

      "A teacher creates a class that sets up accounts for all students in it, in Edmodo. They can share activities, websites, homework assignments classroom activities," Bell says.

      Edmodo http://www.edmodo.com/ provides special codes to schools and classes to prevent outsiders from joining school networks.

      "If they're working on a project for the teacher in the classroom, the teacher can reward the students by giving them a merit badge," Bell explains.