IRONWOOD - With today's rapidly changing technology, textbooks, pencils and paper are becoming things of the past in the classroom.
Teachers and students are finding creative ways to discuss different subjects, including the uses of PowerPoint, iPads and other software or devices.
In Ted Sim's eighth grade history class, students are assigned three projects on the Civil War. The first involves events of the war, the second covers battles and the third involves main ideas or themes of the war.
According to Sim, one project, involving themes of the war, really stuck with him. Students MaKenzie Marshall and McKenna Anderson researched music in the Civil War using PowerPoint.
"We wanted to do something different and something creative," Marshall said.
The girls worked over the course of a week putting the project together, including both familiar and unfamiliar pieces of music.
"Songs like the 'Battle Hymn of the Republic' were familiar, but some songs weren't," Anderson said.
What surprised the girls about the music they were researching was the tempo.
"The subjects of the music were surprising," Anderson said. "We expected the music to be more forlorn."
Sim said Marshall and Anderson are "two real creative, nice kids. From these two, I wasn't surprised by the level of work," Sim said. "They take their grades seriously and are hard workers. The technology they used was impressive. McKenna is really good with technology."
Sim said he likes to promote creativity in the classroom by incorporating projects throughout the year.
"The kids really enjoy it because it's not regular homework," he said. "They get a break from that. I like project-based learning and the kids respond to that."
When asked why they chose music as the subject matter, the girls' answers were simple.
"Because music is really important," Marshall said.
Their hard work paid off, as Marshall and Anderson received a perfect score of 50 on their project.
"We were excited," Anderson said.