Here at North Otter, we as a school are trying hard to engage students with technology tools. Long gone are the ways of the overhead projector that burn your eyes, now all of our classrooms are stocked with document cameras and projectors - we are very much looking forward to having the projectors mounted this year!
In other grades…
Our 1 and only SmartBoard has been used much by our grade 4 classroom teacher and she has been looking for different ways to incorporate it in her lessons – any ideas you have I would be happy to pass her way. In our grade 2/3 classroom, slideshows are used as a creative way to visually teach science lessons that engage the students, with interactive content.
Our school has 15 iPads, which is a challenge as students must share. Many classes find this a difficult task, and we long for the day that we will get 15 more! When this joyous day occurs, we also hope that all our iPads become uniform. Right now, it would seem our tech-savy older students have figured out how to add chaos in that they delete and add Apps!
Lessons in Sharing
Teaching 6 year olds find an app on an iPad became two lessons that had to happen simultaneously as we have iPads running two different iOS systems. Nevertheless our class plugged on and found useful apps that helped us practice Math and Literacy skills. They did well working in partners and trading back and forth every 5 minutes.
We continued doing this for the rest of 2014 when we had our iPad time, and I really enjoy how sometimes students can be practicing their core math skills without even really realizing they are doing it as shown in the image below.
The Ambitious Adventures of a New Year
The first time I used the laptops with my class was this past week. It was definitely a lesson in patience for both my students and myself. Assuming them to understand a keyboard (an iPad has a keyboard that most of them seemed to be able to navigate), I had them go to a website – we were going to make motivational posters to tie in with our talking about Goals and Resolutions for the new year. This inspired questions from the students such as, “where’s the dot key?” and the typing of “wwwdotbighuge” before I was able to come over and show them that a dot was the same thing as a period. This also prompted a quick search of an image of a mac keyboard to project so I could point out what different important keys were. Lesson learned: even if you have learnt to read in grade 1, those rule do not always transfer when you are sitting in front of a computer!
In the end it was a successful afternoon, even though some did not quite get the idea of an inspiring message, I thoroughly enjoy the end product. Next time, we will be starting with the very basics in our use of the laptops. I hope the following images bring some inspiration to your new year!