“Atomic” – adjective: of or forming a single irreducible unit or component in a larger system.

“Learning” – noun: the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience, study, or by being taught.

The two words together make Atomic Learning, an online training company that the Academy has partnered with since 2009 to help faculty and staff learn new technology skills.  The moniker atomic, in this case, indicates the way they use short, step-by-step videos to teach just one skill or technology concept at a time.  Atomic Learning has helped our faculty and staff learn the fundamentals of Windows 7 and was instrumental in a successful transition when we upgraded our software to Microsoft Office 2010.  Atomic Learning has thousands of titles on nearly every aspect of current technology.

And now, this tool is available not just to Academy employees, but to Academy students, as well.  Recently, we determined a need to teach electronic spreadsheet fundamentals to 8th graders to ensure that they are prepared to use these skills in Upper School.  Because the nature of the Bring-Your-Own-Device program meant that not every student would have Microsoft Office on their machines, we could not teach Excel.  However, every student, by virtue of their Google for Education account, has access to Google Sheets, which runs on any platform and can be accessed and worked on from anywhere.

On Oct. 2 and 3, all 8th graders were introduced to Atomic Learning, and will be completing their first assignments on Google Sheets even before you read this.  These projects will help them gain practical experience in technology that they will be expected to use in the future.  We now plan to add accounts into Atomic Learning for all Lower, Middle, and Upper School students so all students, under the guidance of their teachers, can make use of this wonderful teaching tool.