iPads in the Early Years

Learning, Teaching & Exploring with iPads @ Laburnum PS

Setting Up..

on February 27, 2013

Well, it has taken almost 3 weeks, but we are almost ready to launch our iPad program here at school. Good job it didn’t take longer as our students are VERY keen to get going!

 

In the photo below you can see the iPad storage and Syncing trolleys we will be using. So far, so good. There will be one trolley between every 2 classrooms in Prep and Grade 1 – that makes 10 classrooms total across the early years’.

In each of the trolley are two drawers that each hold 10 iPads – 10 iPads for each classroom (10ipads x 10classrooms = 100 ipads!). However, with 20 iPads in total between 2 rooms, teachers can also negotiate with their neighboring class to use an entire class set of 20 ipads, essentially creating a 1:1 iPad program as and when they are needed!

We have begun with some initial teacher training on how to use the iPads and setting some goals for their use as part of the classroom program in the first few weeks. We know from research that any new tool can take up to 3 weeks to become a normal part of the classroom routine and so we are planning to allow some exploration time early on to help our students move from focusing exclusively on the tool, to focusing more on the content we are presenting.

All 100 iPads have a range of apps pre-installed for teacher and student use. These apps were chosen by teachers in the Early Years’ area who participated in our iPad trial last year. We are very keen to draw on their experiences to help integrate this technology into the program.

Much more than simply using apps, however, we want to see what learning we can support using these tools, and in particular more open-ended applications. For example, an app called ‘Little Storybook Maker’ allows students to draw images, type or write in text and then narrate their story. This can be presented to the class and then emailed off the iPad to the teacher who can keep this as record of both their reading and writing abilities.

We will be sure to share this and other activities with you as we get further in to the program!

See you here again soon!


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