There are so many truly lucky classes out there in the world of education where every child walks in with a device of their own. It may be that the school is BYOD, runs a 1:1 iPad or laptop programme or just well resourced.
Once the network upgrade reaches the school that I am at and we have ultra fast broadband we will look into BYOD as the majority of our students have devices of their own. My class is well resourced with an Interactive Whiteboard, desktop PC, 8 Netbooks, cameras, Flip-cameras, microphones and 1 iPad.
It is that one iPad that has been the focus of my learning the past 6 months. At first I played, then I let the students play, then I researched, then we played some more. I gave a workshop at a conference in Invercargill in the holiday on the topic (Slides Below) and still I am redefining my understanding of its best use, but I have come to one constant across the whole learning journey – if you can do it on a computer or on paper with the same ease and effect, then you should. There are too many amazing things to do with an iPad to be working at the Substitution level. Ok, if you are 1:1 and going paperless, then kudos to you and some of what you do will be at all levels of the SAMR spectrum, but if you have 1 or 2 or even 10 iPads and they are being used predominantly for maths and spelling games (and it might not be you, but many are) then you need to rethink your approach.
- Gorilla Blogging- Capturing events as they happen and through Wifi share them with your parents, community and whanau. (Blogger, WordPress, KidBlog)
- Movies – Your ipad is a one stop camera, audio, editing and publishing device. It could be for getting the students to share a visit or a trip, explain their learning, create a documentary, a news article, your own TV station or just having the opportunity to create a movie for the sake of a movie.
- Share the learning – Using Explain everything or Screen Chomp or Show me or Notability as a mini white board that records the students learning visually and their spoken word so that they can show their understanding or share with another or upload to their blog.
- Spice up a School Journal Play and have the opportunity to share it with Grandma in Germany – Puppet Pals, Toontastic or Sock Puppets with any School Journal or play book.
- Things that can be embedded – Create then share on your Blog, Wiki or Website with quick embed codes. (YouTube, Vimeo, Haiku Deck, SoundCloud, AudioBoo, Explain Everything)
- SOCIAL MEDIA! Ok, you can do this through computers as well, but on an iPad there is no need for the constant passwords and the such. It is Imperative that we introduce our students to social media in a safe, scaffold environment. Our Students are digital natives who use devices intuitively, but do not have the cognitive development to understand the consequences of their actions – most teachers are digital immigrants who have had huge learning curves around technology, but do understand what the reaction will be of our actions.
In conclusion, I view an iPad as the ultimate creation device within a classroom, but not the only; we must remember that not a single iPad App was created on an iPad. I pose that if Bill Gates was provided with an iPad at school, not a second hand Teletype 33, we might not have the computers that we have today.