Innovation & Technology @Tree

By the time today's first graders graduate from college, they will be hired into jobs that have not been invented yet, due in part to rapid advances in technology and innovation. Given this reality, our technology focus at Tree of Life Christian Schools is not on a particular device, rather, it is on using technology as a tool to make teaching and learning more engaging, efficient, and effective.

Technology instruction is included in all grade levels at Tree of Life:

  • Elementary classrooms have interactive Mimeo Boards and access to iPads to make teaching and learning more efficient and effective.
  • Most middle and high school classrooms have ceiling or wall-mounted digital projectors with SMART boards.
  • Interactive online Kindergarten - 8th grade technology curriculum provides instruction in keyboarding, word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, and web design.
  • MS classrooms have access to iPads and laptops as well as the Library Media Center.
  • High school course offerings include digital photography, web design, and digital video production.


A Culture of Innovation



Tree of Life seeks to foster a culture of educational innovation. Along with other innovative strategies, new technology offers creative opportunities that allow teachers to most effectively educate students.

Our technology focus at Tree of Life Christian Schools is not on a particular device; rather, it is on using technology as a tool to make teaching and learning more engaging, efficient, and effective. We are following a research-based, developmentally-appropriate (phased) approach to technology integration at all levels.

Previous phases of our technology agenda involved installing digital projectors and interactive white boards in every K-8 classroom. Each K-8 classroom has access to iPads for student use. Technology instruction is included in all grade levels at Tree of Life.

One to One ipads in the High School




The Tree of Life iPad Learning Initiative purposes to help equip Christ-centered students who can create, collaborate, critically think, and communicate with a local and global community. Our mission supports Biblically-based educational preparedness for college and calling readiness through academically excellent programs.

The use of iPads in the high school will allow students to continue to use biblical truth to guide their movements within the world by using technology responsibly and capably for learning and communicating.

More and more colleges have made the use of tablets, laptops, and other technologies part of the regular academic environments. High school iPad use will enable our students to become comfortable in such environments.

All students entering high school for the 2013-2014 school year will receive an iPad tablet.


When does the Ipad Learning Initiative begin?
All students entering high school for the 2013-2014 school year will receive an iPad tablet.
How does this initiative support Tree of Life's mission?
The Tree of Life iPad Learning Initiative purposes to help equip Christ-centered students who can create, collaborate, critically think, and communicate with a local and global community. Our mission supports Biblically-based educational preparedness for college and calling readiness through academically excellent programs.

The use of iPads in the high school will allow students to continue to use biblical truth to guide their movements within the world by using technology responsibly and capably for learning and communicating.

More and more colleges have made the use of tablets, laptops, and other technologies part of the regular academic environments. High school iPad use will enable our students to become comfortable in such environments.
How does this initiative support Tree of Life's response to the State of Ohio's Common Core Curriculum Standards?
iPads provide a means to equip students to use technology and digital media strategically and capably as required by those standards.
How will we monitor instructional effectiveness?
Over a period of several years, we will collect survey and other data from teachers and students, focused on the impact of iPads and other technology devices on learning behaviors and student achievement. Also, we will continue to carefully monitor student achievement data to assess the potential effects of iPads and technology integration.
Will the iPad improve my son/daughter's grades and/or test scores?
No - hard work still does that. However, the iPad has, in fact, been shown to improve motivation, engagement, and time-on-task, and these things have all been proved to improve test scores.

The role of the teacher continues to be central to student achievement. The iPad becomes an additional resource to both the student and the teacher.
Why the iPad? Why not laptops or netbooks?
This is not an either/or decision. We know that the majority of Tree of Life families already have at least one computer in the home. We believe that the combination of the Mac/PC computer and iPad (for mobility and classroom use) will serve the student best. We will continue to support the desktop and laptop computers currently deployed in our media center and lab into the foreseeable future.

Further, the multifunction iPad features educational apps, instant-on capability, long battery life, a user-friendly interface, and additional features that make it an excellent tool to enhance learning.
Will there be digital textbooks?
We are committed to purchasing the best instructional materials, whether they are paper or electronic. We will evaluate and select digital textbooks alongside of traditional textbooks and continue to select the materials we believe are most instructionally sound.
Does this mean my son/daughter doesn't need to use our home computer?
No. Your child will still need to use a computer in conjunction with the iPad. The iPad is good for short-term creative processes, and the computer (desktop and/or laptop) is perhaps better for long-term creative processes, such as writing a research paper.
Will this program increase my tuition?
No. The iPad initiative will not be paid for by raising tuition.

After evaluating options and best practices, we have decided to lease the iPads at fair market value, reducing our costs and passing the savings on to Tree of Life. Accordingly, Tree of Life will not own the iPads and we are able to spread the cost over a multi-year term.
How much is this going to cost me?
We will require each iPad to be covered with a school supplied hard case and a student supplied fabric slip cover. We will require each student to purchase and maintain a low cost school-supplied insurance policy (included in school fees). This policy will cover families against accidental damage and theft. As with other insurance policies, a deductible will apply.
Do we need peripheral devices (stylus/keyboard)?
No. Your child might like to use a stylus or Bluetooth keyboard, but these are optional.
Do I need to have an iTunes account?
Can I load apps/software on my child's device?
No. The iPads will be configured with pre-installed apps and restrictions. Students will only be allowed to use the apps that the school has determined to be appropriate for educational use and will not be able to sync the device to their personal iTunes account.
What if my son/daughter already owns an iPad?
We have learned that most successful schools with 1:1 programs actually provide the iPads for their students - and they support both the devices and the student/families after deployment. This allows the school to ensure a safe learning environment with minimal distraction and a consistent technology throughout the student body.

Therefore, we will not allow students to bring personally-owned iPads or laptops to school.
Do I need to have Wi-Fi at home for the iPad to work?
No, but it helps. Ipads cannot connect via a wired connection. Of course, students can always use wireless at the local library and many other locations.

Note: Some apps and services on the iPad will not work without wireless internet.
How will I keep my son/daughter safe online?
One of the school's biggest concerns for this initiative involves the safe use of iPads by the students. Safe use will require a strong partnership between the home and the school. Therefore, the school will hold mandatory parent training to help support safe student use. While at school, all internet traffic passes through our web filter and firewall. While away from school, we cannot filter traffic. Internet safety becomes the sole responsibility of the parent. There are a number of options families can adopt with respect to Wi-Fi/Internet security in the home, and we leave that to your discretion.

Although at-home Internet security remains beyond the scope of this document, one option is to install a filtering device such as this Linksys wireless router.
What model of iPad will my child receive?
High School will receive the New iPad (iPad 4) 16GB Wi-Fi only.
When will my child receive his/her iPad? What is required for pickup?
iPads will be distributed to students in late summer. In order to pick up the iPad, a parent must accompany his/her child to the training session, complete necessary forms and pay insurance fee.
Can the iPad be used by others in the household?
Yes. Although the iPad is primarily intended for use by the student, we hope the iPad will provide value and enjoyment for the entire family.
As a parent, do I need to know how to use an iPad?
No, but we hope you will get excited and involved. Just remember, before 2010, none of us knew how to use an iPad - the device was not even available. We are all students on this one, and we encourage you to learn along with your child (and with us).
Will students keep the devices during breaks?
Yes, except for summer. We need to do maintenance over the summer months. Devices may also be collected occasionally for updates and maintenance.
Does the school get a special deal on iPads,
and can you sell them at a reduced rate?
No. We do not get significant price breaks, and we cannot resell Apple devices. At this time, we will lease the devices at fair market value, and we cannot resell them.
What should I do if my device is damaged, lost, or stolen?
Within 24 hours, call 614-263-2688 or email ssherrod@tolcs.org. In the case of a lost or stolen device, school officials may be able to use GPS technologies to track the iPad. For damaged and/or stolen devices, we will provide you with an insurance claim form.