Thursday, 24 January 2013

Lesson 4 - First FULL iPad lesson

After two weeks of the pupils having their iPads, this is only the first lesson that we have had the opportunity to use them for the full 60 mins. Previously we were tied by the FCSE assessments - external exams that the class could not complete on their iPads (maybe one day...!).

We tried the Socrative app today, with great success. Socrative is brilliant! There is a teacher version and a student one - it allows the teacher to send out questions to all pupils in their class - the pupils answer the questions, which then update to the teacher's device in real time. It's very appealing and engaging to pupils and saves lots of marking for teachers! At first my plan was to use this app to assess learning in a plenary, but actually today I used it to structure the whole lesson.

I set the class 10 questions about the school system in France. The Socrative app divided the class into four groups and their task was to research answers to the questions on the internet. The first group to have all answers completed on Socrative were the winners. This worked really well, especially for my very competitive class! Having done the same lesson with other classes - without Socrative and without iPads - I can assure you that this was by far the most efficient and fastest way of doing things!

Their next task was to use that information to create an informative cover page for their new module. They began to create these in Bamboo Paper by finding some images that they could write various facts and pieces on information over. We shared a few of these via Apple TV, I then sent their homework to them via email, and they shall send me their completed cover pages before next lesson.

A couple of small issues are cropping up. One of them is that pupils are unclear on the appropriate way to address members of staff on email, e.g. hearts and kisses, and 'babe' not appropriate! I have had to speak to them a couple of times about this now and I think they are learning - it's actually a very valuable lesson to learn in any case. The second is the playing on apps when they should be working. Still happening and still not entirely sure how to combat it... Apart from nag nag nagging, which gets rather tedious for all concerned after a while!

Still, things are going generally very well at the moment, far better than I originally thought they would at this stage. And although I thoroughly enjoy teaching all of my classes, I have to admit that I really look forward to the iPad lessons!

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