Language Arts &
Social Studies Teacher
"Students in Randi's class engage in learning via a variety of activities including HyperDocs, gamified lessons and collaborative presentations. Using these activities has allowed Randi’s students to widen their knowledge of technology while at the same time creating an excitement for learning in her classroom."
- Dr. John B. Gaddis, Somerset County Public Schools Superintendent
Merritt has been an instrumental teacher-leader for Somerset County Public Schools in its implementation of G-Suite and Google Classrooms. Her willingness to actively adopt the new learning management platform and assist her colleagues in the transition has set her apart from many other educators. To further learn the tools of the Google programs, Merritt went out of her way to participate in a Google Certified Educator program, an intense online learning program focused on G-Suite tools, digital citizenship, copyright, and advanced uses for Google tools used to create solid blended learning lessons.
“Randi uses every digital tool in the educational toolbox to provide quality, differentiated instruction for all of her students,” Somerset County Public Schools Instructional Technology Supervisor Jill Holland stated about Merritt’s passion for using these new digital tools to enhance learning experiences. Utilizing the potential that comes with the collaboration tool allows students to conceptualize the manner to become responsible digital citizens. “Rather than limit students’ use of digital resources, Randi is always looking for ways to open students up to new ideas by offering choice and voice in her classroom instruction; she is the epitome of an outstanding 21st century teacher.”
One of her strongest assets in working with Google Classroom is her ability to differentiate instruction to meet the different needs of students in her classroom.
“Randi uses Google Classroom to deliver personalized, differentiated instruction to her middle school students,” Somerset County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. John B. Gaddis touted about Merritt’s special ability to make learning digital, collaborative, and fun for all students. “Students in Randi's class engage in learning via a variety of activities including HyperDocs, gamified lessons and collaborative presentations. Using these activities has allowed Randi’s students to widen their knowledge of technology while at the same time creating an excitement for learning in her classroom.”
As an English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher, her eagerness to have students experience the content in a manner that they likely haven’t experienced before. Merritt focuses on building a community of independent thinkers in her classroom who can take charge of their own learning experiences. Daily those same students are experiencing a digital workflow through the use of multiple platforms teaching students not only basic technology skills, but work flow, time management, and organizational skill sets.
“Randi Merritt teaches students they can do things, from creating a collaborative slide show to an award winning performance at Maryland History Day,” Holland indicated as she shared some of the many great successes Merritt has in her work with children in Somerset County. “Randi’s students always get an opportunity for self-expression, creativity, and academic achievement. Her students are empowered to take control of their own learning.”
To replicate some of Merritt’s magic with technology, Holland explained Merritt plays the role of a technology leader in many instances among her colleagues. She regularly presents to colleagues on digital tools that support the successful roll out of G-Suite and Google Classroom throughout the school district.
Merritt will be honored as a MSET Digital Learning Showcase recipient for her work with using educational technology to enhance learning outcomes for students in May at the Common Ground Awards Luncheon at the Roland Powell Convention Center in Ocean City.
About Digital Learning Showcase
MSET is taking the opportunity to highlight best practices in classroom teaching, leading, and learning with educational technology from around the state of Maryland. The goal is to spotlight innovations of members and nonmembers throughout different public and private school settings. Each month teachers, school leaders, and community members are asked to nominate individuals who support innovation and educational technology in a school setting.
MSET is non-profit organization with the purpose of promoting the improvement of the teaching-learning process through effective technology integration into all curricular areas as well as fostering and promoting excellence technology in education. MSET is an affiliate of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), a leading international network for technology professionals.