Bringing Fun to the Classroom
In her 25 years with the Christian County School District, Chris Tyson Renshaw says one of the biggest changes she’s observed is that students are surrounded by a lot less paper these days and a whole lot more technology.
And the leap to the digital age, she adds, has transformed the way students learn.
“The big thing you see is the confidence it gives students,” said Tyson Renshaw, the school district’s digital learning coach who also was named a national 2022 PBS Digital Innovator All Star for her use of technology in the classroom. “Technology encourages them to learn at their own pace and find their own way, and that gives them a lot of opportunities to showcase their talents and abilities.”
When Tyson Renshaw goes on the hunt for educational resources to bring this technology to life, one of the first places she turns to is KET.
KET plays a role in letting our kids know what an incredible place Kentucky is.Chris Tyson Renshaw
KET resources, she said, are the perfect classroom complement. They give educators a way to augment lesson plans with hands-on activities, such as virtual tours and interactive games, that draw in students and get them involved. And the resources are aligned to Kentucky standards, often exploring the Commonwealth’s history, geography and industries in ways that “get kids outside the walls of the schools” and out investigating the world around them, Tyson Renshaw said.
“Our location in Hopkinsville means we tend to be tied geographically more to Nashville than to Kentucky – but that’s not our history,” she said. “So KET plays a role in letting our kids know what an incredible place Kentucky is. They get to learn about the Commonwealth’s government, its cities and even the manufacturers right here in Christian County that employ their families and make the food they eat.”
Additionally, she said, KET resources are always user-friendly, from its early childhood development activities for younger learners to its more advanced civics and history lessons for the later grades.
“The great thing about KET’s resources is that they just work,” she said. “Our teachers love the fact that they don’t have to dig through countless videos trying to find the perfect clip to show their classroom. With KET, the two-minute video is already there, ready to integrate into their lesson. And when resources are as user-friendly as KET’s, that makes it easy for everyone – from teachers to parents to students – to want to be involved.”
But above all, Tyson Renshaw says the thing that keeps her returning time and again to KET’s educational materials is they make learning enjoyable.
“With KET resources, the fun is built in,” she said. “When you can bring joy to the classroom, whether interacting with Curious George, playing with a robot or flying a drone, that’s something that changes a student’s day for the better. And kids are like sponges. When they experience success, they want more of it. So the fun part is definitely something we look for every day, and it’s one of the reasons I’m grateful to have KET as an education partner.”