Jefferson Elementary fourth-graders in Lacy Mitchell’s class finished the year knowing that they successfully wrote their first grant.

The Ardmore Rotary Club helped the school purchase three iPads for Mitchell’s class.

The grant-writing began as a lesson in persuasive writing, which is part of the Common Core Curriculum.

While students were full of reasons in their letters, on Wednesday they were just excited to finally have the devices.

“It’s pretty interesting. You can get to play on it, do Success Maker and do Study Island,” ShayLee Crochier said.

In addition to increasing the availability of learning software in the classroom, the iPads will save time when students need computer access instead of going to the computer lab and will provide an activity for students who finish their work early.

“Whenever we finish our work, we can get out the iPads and play with them,” Tierra Bowman said.

Students wrote the letters in February and didn’t hear back until Wednesday. Mitchell said the students would anxiously ask her when they would hear something.

The students also experienced firsthand the need for more electronics in the classroom.

When students worked to complete their Accelerated Reader goals, they needed more computers so more than one student could take a test at a time.

They also realized that the iPads would be helpful in math class.

“It helps us with trouble in math and reading, and we can get on the calculator,” Katie Szabo said.

Since the devices came on the last day of school, Mitchell will be inviting her students from this school year to come to the school to use the iPads.

“They worked so hard for them, and I’m going to be here anyway,” said Mitchell, who will be working summer school. “I just want them to have a chance because they worked so hard for them and it will help them learn about technology.”

Next school year, Mitchell predicts the iPads will see a lot of use not only in her classroom but throughout the school.

“They’ll be shared throughout the school and used just like the kids wanted them to be,” Mitchell said. “This is a step up for the technology at Jefferson.”