We’ve deployed 45 iPads to teachers and students and the classes are now swimming without floaties (don’t worry, the swim instructor is never too far away!). All iPads are being used everyday and this has been really amazing to see.
Recently, my school has been assessing students using various online tests. Using the iPads for these types of tests has been interesting. A colleague of mine put it aptly that the iPads are such a social device, the students couldn’t help moving in their seats, whispering to others, showing others what they were doing all throughout their tests. If this is the case, collaboration doesn’t need to be forced. Setting up individual or small group tasks with the iPads will illustrate how social these devices are and allow you to program for it.
One site which has been a revelation in app research and reviews has been APPitic. This site has a wealth of apps for all your teaching and learning needs. Labelled as “a directory of apps for education”, the simplicity and user-friendliness of this site draws you in to spend hours searching, reading and trialling an endless amount of apps (well not endless, 1300+ to be exact).
The site has 3 important heading: Themes, Multiple Intelligences and Bloom’s Taxonomy. Why is this site unique? It’s brilliance lies in its ability to embed the needs of an iPad program and teaching pedagogy and curriculum.
Finally people are starting to realise that technology cannot drive one’s curriculum, it is merely an enabler. The framework of the website and all the apps offered demonstrate how important it is to develop curriculum based programs with the integration of the iPad on our mind. We can’t just say “write it on the iPad” instead of using paper because replacing old technology with new is a cop out. We have to say “how can I use the iPad to extend and promote learning on a daily basis”. In this way, we can transform our school.
Question is: What tech skills do we want our students to have by the time they leave at the end of the year?