Three adults take a selfie Curriculum - AI Enthusiasts

Embracing AI in K-12 Education: A Leap Forward

June 26, 2024

Since Spring 2023, our Digital Learning department has been diligently keeping abreast of all new developments in AI (Artificial Intelligence) and its impact on teaching and learning in K-12 education. We have been participating in various professional learning events, collaborating with Districts across the province and the country, and researching AI tools that could be responsibly and ethically leveraged by Abbotsford educators to enhance the learning experience for our K-12 students.

To deepen our collective understanding of the ethical, responsible, and safe use of AI in K-12 education, our department has led professional learning communities on the topic and collaborated with other departments at CORE to identify AI tools that we could recommend for educators' ethical, responsible, and safe use in our schools.

Among our preferred tools and resources are the Microsoft Learning Accelerators (Reading Coach and Search Coach), Microsoft Copilot on the Edge browser, SchoolAI, and Diffit. These tools can assist educators by generating “just right” instructional materials, saving time, and enabling all students to access grade-level content.

On the last Professional Learning Day, we hosted a session titled “Unlocking the Potential of Your Literacy Program.” This session, a planned collaboration between the ELL and Digital Learning departments, was co-hosted by Michelle Gill and Nelly Fargeon. The session delved into the world of digital citizenship, explored how to maximize the use of existing devices in our classrooms and schools, and introduced innovative AI tools like Diffit and Copilot for fast and simple differentiation to meet the needs of all learners.

Michelle and Nelly also showcased Book Creator's new translation features and the Microsoft Reading Coach's standalone website within Teams. These tools aim to improve fluency and rekindle the joy of reading. The standout tool, however, was Diffit. This AI tool consistently impresses educators with its ability to save hours of work by using our BC curriculum to create complete, differentiated resources. Diffit is also able to re-level, translate, add images, and more to existing activities. Educators can then export their content into student-ready activities.

The session was attended by a diverse group of educators, including classroom teachers, ELL instructors, and Educational Assistants (EAs) from all levels, K-12. The feedback received was overwhelmingly positive. Participants found the tools practical and easy to use, and they appreciated their immediate applicability.

The collaborative approach to this session deepened the learning experience and allowed Michelle and Nelly to troubleshoot effectively.

We are excited about our progress and look forward to continuing our work. Our goal is to develop more innovative tools and strategies to support student learning.