Class Picture

Class Picture

Friday, January 24, 2014

iPads Are Here!!!

The anticipation is finally over. My class received their iPads on Wednesday. It has been a busy, exciting and not always perfect three days. 

My students have done a great job! They are so eager to learn new Apps and help each other. I am amazed at how quickly they have been able to learn to navigate on the iPad. They chomp, swipe and do a two finger pinch with ease. They love using a stylus which surprises me too!

On the first day, my wonderful iPad coach, +Brent Catlett, got us all started. He talked to my students about how our class would be using the iPads. He walked the class through the parts of the iPad, the buttons, ways to navigate, safety, and then we got started. They learned to copy, paste, take photos, use Photo Booth, change their wallpaper and use Skitch. This was all in about an hour! It was amazing to watch and assist.  

Then, I was left alone! I kind of felt like a 1st year teacher again. But that was only for a moment. In the afternoon, I introduced Popplet and walked them through a project that we titled, "All About Me." It was really fun to see them create their first project on the iPad. They ended the day publishing a blog in Kidblog about our first day with the iPads.

Day two was a lot like day one. We reviewed everything we learned and did on the iPad. Then, I introduced a new App called Screen Chomp. They wrote down math problems and solved them. They liked recording themselves explain and solving the problems. Then were able to watch the replay of the short video. It was also the 100th day of school so we started making a list of 100 things we learned on the iPad. The list kept growing throughout the day. Next, I thought a game would be a good change of pace. I showed them Spelling Monsters. They had to enter their spelling words and then could choose from 3 games to play.  Coach Catlett stopped by in the afternoon. He taught the class how to find images on Google and save them to the camera roll. We searched for pictures of landforms. Another fun day learning!

On day three, I introduced an iTunes U course. The course is something that will replace a morning routine. My class fill outs a Daily Think Sheet that encompasses a lot of skills related to reading, spelling and math. They learned to open the iTunes U course and export it to Notability so that they can fill it out on the iPad. So, then Notability had to be introduced and taught. I'm hoping they remember all the steps on Monday! In time, I know they will. Next, we learned about how to write a good comment on a blog. They then left comments on another classes' blog page. We ended the day creating another project in Popplet using the landform pictures from yesterday.

As I read over my blog, I am very happy with all that we were able to accomplish in just 3 days of school. There were a few mis-haps with some Apps, a few warnings for not following directions and some technical issues. But the learning, excitement and possibilities far out weigh any of the small problems encountered!

Here is a short video of all the iPad action in class!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

It's Almost Time...

It's finally January and my excitement is bursting at the seams. My class will be receiving our iPads some time this month. Today upon their arrival back from Christmas break and an extra "extreme cold" day off from school, one of the first questions asked was, "Do we get our iPads today?" I had to tell them, "No, but very soon I hope." They were so cute about it!

Thinking about using iPads has really encompassed my mind recently. I spent a lot of time over break reading blogs, online articles, watching YouTube videos and searching/trying out different Apps about using iPads in an elementary classroom. Lots of advice was given and suggestions were made. It really just further pumped up my excitement and started a little build up of anxiety about the task ahead of me too.

I know that my wonderful iPad Academy coach @catlett1 will help me with any issues. I will also have a great team of teachers (#FVFirebirds) who will be embarking on this journey with me to bounce ideas with.

So the time is almost here. I am super excited to use the iPad to support my district curriculum and spark a lot of creativity in my students. We even wrote New Year's Resolutions in class today. My resolution is to find ways to make learning fun for my students. I have been given a new, exciting tool to use to enhance my current ways of instruction and change the way my students share their learn. It's truly an exciting point in my teaching career.