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Are iPads in lesson actually useful?

Author Topic: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?  (Read 1767 times)

atlasschmatlas

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Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« on: May 19, 2014, 08:49:25 AM »
We have the chance to purchase a set of iPads for our department to be used in lessons. Are they a gimmick and money should be spent elsewhere or are they genuinely useful?

Does anybody use them and what do they use for? What apps do you use?

Any advice would be appreciated.

lottee1000

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2014, 10:08:42 AM »
It depends on what other ICT access you have. For research etc, invaluable to us!

atlasschmatlas

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2014, 01:07:07 PM »
Yeah research is the major benefit I was thinking.

We are going to install an apple tv in the classroom too.

Are there any particular apps that have made your life or students' easier?

podders

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2014, 04:21:24 PM »
A lot of data visualistation sites like GapMinder use Flash Player and this won't work on iPads.  Simon Armitage is doing some work here: http://cambridgelearning.wordpress.com/ipadgeography/

. ........ and has some nice examples of student generated work here:  http://cambridgelearning.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/learning-and-engagement-with-ipads-the-finished-project/
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podders

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2014, 04:22:21 PM »
Also, I started gathering information here just in case we ever switch over (unlikely at the moment)

http://www.geographypods.com/using-ipadiphone.html

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vickitoria

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2014, 07:39:37 PM »
iPads are useful but only if you make them useful. We only have 5 in the school therefore a little creative thinking is necessary.
I occasionally use apps on them - not generally geography based - more to present work in a quick and dynamic way e.g. comic life
The other day I used them as part of group work - pupils generated questions in groups about what they would like to learn about Brazil - they then separated into new groups - one with Atlases, one with books, one with recent newspaper articles, one group had computers with the internet. The iPad group had a QR code which took them to a video about Brazil. After 10 minutes they returned to their original groups and shared their findings. It was a very successful lesson - I thought pupils might complain they hadn't all had a turn on computers / iPads but they seemed happy with the resource they were given.

Victoria

edge

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2014, 06:05:00 AM »
We have 10 in geography and they are used on a daily basis by at least one class.  We've successfully used them in an increasingly wide range of ways; videos, interviews, sound recording, iMovie for short edited films, educreations app for revision videos narrated by kids, OS Locate app for generating grid references quickly on fieldwork, GPS log for plotting routes on fieldwork, iBooks for GCSE revision, sketch app for annotating photos on fieldwork and probably lots of other uses I haven't thought of!

The joy is that the kids can use them with little or no instruction from us. The only time we really need to 'teach' them anything si when using a new app for the first time.  They've been great for inspiring us to get more creative in our use of them as we wanted to move behind just the research and internet usage.  Managing the content and getting stuff on and off is still a pain, I have no control of them - everything has to go through ICT technicians and this can be time consuming.  Like everything there are ups and downs!  We've got a booking sheet for them in the department and they live in a  bag with an extension lead for charging, the rule is less than 20% battery and they are plugged in by whoever has use them last.  They are turned off after each use to prolong the battery life between uses. 

We have some hardcore cases so they accompany us on fieldwork too.  Never have kids done so much interpretations as when recording videos about what they were doing/seeing and annotating images as they were stood next to the river they were studying.  Back at the field centre they could immediately access secondary data of all descriptions to extend their work.  Fab!
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zcsaa44

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2014, 10:00:58 AM »
I worked in a school where every students had one, found comic life to be a good fun resource. Problem we had before that when we shared them was the students had to use the exact same one as before if the lesson continued. Would love them for research now as have the worst ict access for my GCSE class

lottee1000

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Re: Are iPads in lesson actually useful?
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2014, 08:13:53 AM »
Just a comment on the flash issue - if you have the Puffin browser or Photon Edu, you can use websites with flash. Puffin ignores school firewalls etc though, so kids can access anything on it which might usually be blocked, hence we have changed to Photon Edu.