Tuesday, October 01, 2013

IPad Sharing Practice - St Aloysiuus

James Cluckie

Previously used shared notebooks, interactive whiteboards and GoogleDocs but there were problems, for example, difficult to react flexibly when you have to book notebooks well in advance. A few years ago, went for a NetBook solution. Felt this was more appropriate than iPad because there was a familiarity with Windows, felt it was more appropriate for creating content (iPads were seen as more useful for consuming content), and a minimum spec was defined so parents could buy alternative devices if they preferred.

There were pros and cons. It was felt that the classroom management software gave some control over what pupils were doing on devices, although he admitted that staff soon learned that, just like any other resource, direct observation of pupils while they work is usually the most effective way of monitoring what is going on.

Problems included managing expectations - for example, pupils should not expect to use the devices all the time in every class all day. Staff also frustrated that they did not have the time to develop as many uses as they would have liked. The devices were cheap and were too easily damaged. The school we surprised {I'm not! -- DDM} at the lack of IT skills in the pupils. Final nail in the coffin was the collapse of the Netbook market.

Evaluation of alternative advices took in laptops, android devices and iPads (among others). As programme rolled forward, they decided to allow mixed environment as they felt they should continue to support the Netbook. In first week of new year, it was about 20% iPad and 80% Netbook. Within two weeks, that had turned around completely and about 80% now use iPads. Support a BYOD approach for iPads (anything from iPad 2 up). Offering leased option to parents. Most staff/students have gone newer iPads but a few have gone for iPad mini.

Staff were surveyed about their confidence in using the iPad. Most are now confident in their own use and are looking for more advanced training.

School is using Schoology which offers similar facilities as eBackpack. School no longer issues paper based pupil planners. Instead, the teacher enters things such as homework into Schoology and this is automatically copied into pupil diaries. Have just rolled out parent access to Schoology. Some MIS programs supported although again, mostly American systems.

Explain Everything being used a s a screencasting tool. Being used by pupils to submit work. Example given of a pupil submission showing her understanding time - allows demonstration of deeper understanding. Working on an SAMR model. See tools such as Explain Everything as helping the move into the Modification and Redefinition stages.

Meraki Device Management used. Reflector App used to send iPad display to existing projectors - works but "is a bit flaky"!

The iPad has found wide acceptance with staff and pupils. Only 7% of staff say they still need help with the basics, although small but very vocal minority remain anti-Apple!

Location:Edinburgh, United Kingdom


olliebray said...

Hi David, is James Cluckie on Twitter? Keen to ask him more about his use of Schoology. Thanks for blogging about all the 1:1 stuff! OB

David said...

Hello Ollie.

If he is on Twitter, I don't know where he is. :-)