Saturday, July 23, 2011


I promised I would write about ipads.  As mentioned, I borrowed six ipads from media services at the school board.  I would have taken more but that is what I got.  Then the trick was how could I use them effectively.  I  organized it so that each day all the kids have had access to the ipads from 10 to 30 minutes depending on what was going on.  With 20 students I could organized four groups and one group could be using ipads.  In this picture the boys are picking pictures from Explore Flickr to write about.

The kids absolutely loved them.  Everyday the kids went used the Brainpop application.  Each day there is an informative video on a wide range of topics with a multiple choice quiz they took.  One truth I have learned in teaching is kids actually do like to learn and they enjoyed a range of topics from Bastille Day to Apartheid South Africa to astronomy.

To go with my novel study of Call It Courage, the kids did research on Polynesia, each picking a country on which to do a presentation.  The initial research was done with the Wikipanion application.  Later we did Hawaiian stations I had organized long ago.  I think I lost my version of The Three Little Puaa but found a summation and a utube video of kids  in Hawaii who doing a version so that the kids watched that as part of a station.  That was neat as the children could really hear what a Polynesian language sounds like. 

As a teacher I would find it very useful having an ipad handy as it doesn't take much space and I could quickly look things up or check e-mail without going to my desktop computer with my back to the class!  I am not convinced I personally need one though but if the school would provide me with one that would be delightful because sometimes I end up bringing my own laptop to school for a variety of reasons.   Making my classroom wireless with a router was one of the smartest things I have done-so much easier and essential to having the ipads.   I found  they worked fine out in our covered area outside my classroom as well, as I found them a bit noisy.  One of my kids kindly brought his own earphones.  I think if you were to have them in the classroom earphones would be necessary.  At times I did set the kids up with one in each table group to use as another dictionary for instance when we were doing word study. 

I found lots of good free apps, but at this point I think I have only touched the surface of using ipads.  I probably should put up a separate page on some of the apps that I liked best for intermediate students such as BBC World, the NASA site etc.  It sure enabled me to make summer school a fun experience for the students.


Super Busy said...

Sounds like you created a series of useful and engaging lessons for your students, using the IPads. Well done!

meredyth kezar said...

Thank you!