Friday, 26 October 2012

Using ipads in teaching and learning - an introduction

Yesterday I ran my first session promoting tablets in education.  It was to students and staff in my institution and only 40 minutes.  I decide I didn't have time for any substantial presentation and focused on a structure of showing/playing with a few apps.  I haven't quite settled on how I want to articulate and differentiate different types of apps yet.  I've found plenty of other's categorisations but I want to do my own.  These will no doubt come to light as I continue learning.

Because of this and the time constraints I decided to pick 7 apps which I articulated as representing and exemplifying different types of activities you can use ipads for.  I chose free apps, ones that had good usability and no account creation to try them out.  The session worked well.  For each, I did a quick demo and then they played using the ipads I provided.  As I suspected a few already had ipads and, because they were free apps, downloaded them in the session to play on.  For the others they borrowed one from me with them pre-loaded.  I'm anticipating that future sessions will be a similar mixture of ipadded and non-ipadded participants.  I need to be mindful of this.

Below are the apps I chose.  They are good starting point if you have an ipad and want to start thinking about possibility for use in teaching and learning.

Make Dice

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A fun way to randomly choose the next activity. Create a dice and label each side with words. Then roll the dice by shaking it. The free lite version gives you enough functionality to use effectively.



iBrainstorm

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Online noticeboard web apps have been around for a few years. This is a simple ipad version which



Visualize

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Suitable for creation of content by teacher and for individual/group project work for students. There is a strong creative element to the design of any visualize project. It's about mixing different media to make an effective poster-like display.



Ubersense

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This app introduces the video possibilities of this device. By being mobile its able to be versatile in its location. This app is specifically for sport movement analysis. Try it and see how it works.



Simplemind

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There are hundred of mindmapping web apps and many have produced an ipad version. There are many free examples. This one you can paly with without creating an account.



Skitch

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Drawing and annotating on a blank screen, a photo, a map or a screenshot. A versatile app which can be linked to evernote if you use this. Easy to use.



Socrative

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This is a slick, live Q&A tool which works well with both tablets and smartphones. You need to teacher app to create the questions or quizzes and the students need to student app to see and complete the quizzes. You can see/display live results and email them to yourself. 
 
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Finally, I've started a website which I use as a resource to support the use of ipads in teaching and learning.  It is found here - http://ipadsioe.weebly.com/

The next post will concern logistical issues with this type of session.

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