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Athens school using new device to make learning more engaging

Teachers have been using the Q-Ball for a couple of weeks and have fallen in love with it!

Posted: Aug 22, 2019 4:52 PM

Teachers in Athens are using a new device this school year to help students become more engaged in the classroom.

Every classroom at Athens Intermediate School comes equipped with a "Q-Ball." It has a microphone inside of it, making learning not only more fun for the students, but the teachers as well.

WAAY 31 visited a classroom on Thursday to see how it works, and why teachers are falling in love with it.

"They're excited because they get to throw the ball back and forth, and then they get to answer and it's like being on stage with a microphone," Laura Dougherty, a 5th grade teacher at the school, said.

Dougherty has only been using the Q-Ball for a couple of weeks, but says it's already made a big difference in her classroom.

"It keeps the classroom chatter really quiet because they want to hear what somebody's saying and the flip side of that, when they're talking in the microphone, they want others to hear them," she said.

The microphone inside has speakers attached all around the classrooms so students can hear no matter where they're sitting in the classroom, or how quietly somebody is speaking.

The Q-Ball also comes with a camera that's attached to the ceiling so administrators can see what's happening in every classroom.

"It helps for safety and also professional development, because the teachers can record their own lessons, go back and look at what they're doing and...determine where they can improve," the assistant principal, Lorian Charles, said.

Now that teachers have their hands on it, they can't imagine teaching without it.

"I actually went to my administrators after the first day using it and said it is amazing, and I never want to teach without it and if you try to take it from me, I will fight you for it," Dougherty said.

Athens Renaissance School started using the devices last year and said they had great success with them.

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