Sunday, November 4, 2012

Interstate iPad Education

During Fall break I went to visit my daughter in California. She is a second grade teacher at a small school in northern California. It's a K-5 school in a very nice community.

At the end of last school year, they purchased iPads for all of the teachers. The teachers had them over the summer so that they could get to know their iPads. However, they really needed some direction and education in how to use them within the classroom and as a teacher productivity tool.

During my visit I had the opportunity to go to school with my daughter since they do not have a Fall break. With her Principal's approval, we scheduled some time after school for me provide training and education on using the iPad as an instructional tool in the classroom.

We discussed several different ways to mirror (project) the iPad screen in the classroom. Since all of the teachers have projectors and document cameras, that is where we started. I mentioned that simply displaying the iPad under the document can be very effective and their least expensive option. We also looked at the Apple iPad VGA Adapter (AKA: dongle) to connect the iPad directly to their projectors. A fairly reasonable cost at just $29.00 from Apple.

Of course I really wanted them to think about being "untethered teachers" and displaying their iPad screen wirelessly. This led our conversation to using either the Apple TV or software such as the Reflection App. I was actually able to model this for them using my laptop.

We then moved on to talking about apps. I modeled several interactive whiteboard apps such as Educreations, Explain Everything, and Doceri. The app discussion also covered apps for teacher productivity, math, and language arts. I followed up our session by providing them with a summary of what i shared so they could disuss their best options with their school technology committee.

They are a great group of teachers to work with and I hope to have an opportunity to share with them again. It's great being able to share across state lines!

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