Virginia Beach City Public Schools in Virginia are embracing the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance teaching and learning. Since the release of the generative AI tool Chat GPT last November, the school district’s instructional technology department has been closely monitoring its development. Open AI, the platform on which Chat GPT operates, is currently limited to use by teachers and administrators due to concerns about student privacy and age requirements.
Sharon Shewbridge, the director of instructional technology at VBCPS, believes that AI can be a positive tool for staff members. She encourages them to leverage it for creative idea generation and use it to level the field for learning. Teachers can benefit from AI’s ability to provide assistance with lesson plans and help develop innovative teaching methods.
One example of how teachers can utilize AI is by using Chat GPT to create stories at different reading levels. Shewbridge mentions an elementary school teacher who needed a story suitable for students with varying reading abilities. By asking Chat GPT, the teacher was able to obtain a story at three different reading levels, allowing the whole class to engage with it effectively.
It is important to note that AI is not meant to replace teachers entirely, but rather to support them in their work. Shewbridge emphasizes the need for educators to use AI wisely, ensuring that the information they receive is accurate and aligns with their intended goals.
Helen Crompton, an instructional technology professor at Old Dominion University, highlights the significance of AI in education. She explains that AI can assist teachers and help expedite tasks that need to be completed before they can enter the classroom. By eliminating some of the busy work, AI allows teachers to spend more time directly engaging with students and utilizing these tools to enhance the learning experience.
AI has the potential to revolutionize education in various ways, from improving lesson plans to making learning more accessible. Shewbridge notes that it expands the toolbox of ideas and examples available to teachers, offering possibilities that may not have been accessible before.
Overall, AI is viewed as a gamechanger in education. However, its successful implementation relies on careful consideration and responsible use. Educators must ensure that they use AI tools with a critical eye, maintaining accuracy and appropriateness for their specific educational contexts.
In summary, Virginia Beach City Public Schools are embracing the use of AI to enhance teaching and learning. AI tools like Chat GPT are being used by teachers and administrators to level the learning field, create engaging materials, and expedite administrative tasks. While AI is not intended to replace teachers, it serves as a valuable support system and allows educators to dedicate more time to students.