|photo from www.brainparade.com|
This week we started our trial of using 6 iPads in the classroom. We introduced the children in year two to the idea and explained that we would be using the iPads across their work for the next term. The children are very excited. Some of them had the opportunity to use the iPads to create firework pictures during golden time and I was impressed with how sensible they were and how well they shared and waited for their turn.
We used most of this week for planning work; asking the children initial questions about their use of ICT in school and their uses of different devices in and out of school (scans of questionnaires to follow); and preparing the iPads. This took ages since it involved updating all the iPads to iOS5, downloading all the Redbridge Games Network apps onto one iPad, organising the apps and screens as we wanted them, taking a back-up of the iPad and then restoring the back-up onto all of the other iPads. Each iPad also needed setting up to connect up to the school WiFi signal including the proxy server settings. Of course, all of this is a one off set up and is worth the time it took. We now have 6 identical iPads making it easy for children to find apps, no matter which iPad they have.
At first we were a little stuck as to how we would use the iPads and I think we got a bit bogged down with the idea of 'iPad project', feeling that all the work should be linked. The simple answer slowly became obvious - we should use the iPads the way we use other computers; as and when they can be used to enhance the lesson and benefit the children's learning. Now we have started to plan the use of the iPads into our normal curriculum lessons, starting next week with creating sketches of Guy Fawkes as part of our 'Eye on London' International Primary Curriculum topic. We are also planning to use particular apps during maths starters and in phonics lessons.
We will keep the blog updated with our progress, including what works, and what doesn't.