Monday, July 2, 2012

iLe@rn with Mobile Devices - iPad 2 - Module 1

I have registered for a course that is run by The Sydney Catholic Education Office to learn more about my iPad. The Course Introduction states its purpose as being 'intended to support teachers to become familiar with the iPad as an effective tool for learning and to apply the iLE@RN model to mobile learning opportunities' . I have had my iPad for over a year and registered for the course mainly because I am my school's eLearning Coordinator and in the past have found it easier to support staff when I have completed the same courses. And as usual, there are quite a few staff at the College registered for the iLe@rn with Mobile Devices course; they are amazingly technology keen!

However, after completing just the first module I have found some new functions that I was not aware of before, although I have seen my two year old daughter working them out! The main area that interested me in Module 1 were the activities about iBooks.

I'm an avid reader of the Crime and Thriller genre and have been pleased to find that most of my favourite authors like John Connolly, Mo Hayder, Brian Freeman and Ian Rankin have published ebooks. I now prefer (when I get the chance, which is not very often) reading books on the iPad rather than hard copies and one tool I have discovered through Module 1 is using collections to keep my eBooks and PDFs better organised. I use my own iPad in class and being able to place texts for students in a  collection specifically made for them helps to keep my personal life at a distance from work.

Another handy tip I have picked up is using the 'Define' option in iBooks and today it helped me to find out that Scouser is a noun for a person from Liverpool. It is handy to have this function within that app and for students using iBooks it would help them to stay on task by not having to exit the app to find a definition. It was so very quick, easy and helpful.

I also really like the function of being able to add and edit notes. I often use Stickies on my computer and Post it Notes in real life. They are handy for providing context and could also be used to provide students with guidance on what they should 'do' with the selected text. Perhaps they could be guided to an activity to be completed or simply to posed a hypothetical question or situation to ponder with the aim of helping students to engage at a deeper level with the text.

Although I already know how to take photos and video taking screen shots is something new. I can see a use for students to use screen shots to record the progress of their work in many different subjects including TAS. Design portfolios are an important aspect of assessment and many students struggle with the idea of documenting. Using mobile technology is quick, easy, and engaging and may be the key to assisting struggling students record progress and processes.

Screen shot of the Blogger App I used to make some parts of this post.

My two children aged 5 and 3 love the iPad and each have their favourite apps that they are often using. I was unaware until recently that apps need to be closed and was surprised to find over 25 apps open. I have notice a bit of  lag with the iPad lately and now know why! With many of the apps closed the iPad is running like new, much to my chagrin as I was thinking it could be a good excuse for an iPad 3... oh well...

1 comment:

  1. hi Joanne, i enjoyed your reflection on learning with iPads, and particularly your comments about screen shots helping students document their design process. I am looking forward to hearing more.