Tag Archive for 1:1

Starting the Year with a 1:1 iPad Initiative

In the current NAESP Principal Communicator online edition, you can find my article “Starting the Year with a 1:1 iPad Initiative” HERE.

Using Educreations for Screencasting

I’ve previously written about using the Educreations app in the classroom, but now the app got even better! I’d like to say to say that I had a part in it, but it’s only because I tweeted to @Educreations about a feature that I hoped would improve and they responded quickly that the change update would come soon (wish I saved that tweet for this post!)

Previously if you made a mistake in recording your voice, if you needed to start over, it also meant your screen would start over.  The update now allows you to clear the screen or clear the audio recording which makes the process easier if you make any mistakes.

In effort to keep supporting my teachers with our 1:1 iPad implementation, I’ve added an “iPad Tip of the Week” to my Friday Focus post for staff.  So far, I’m just starting out with very basic tips. Last week was how to add bookmarks to your homescreen and how to create folders. This week I wanted to share how to change the default email signature so it no longer says “sent from my iPad.” To also show my use of the iPad, I used Educreations to create a quick screencast to show teachers how to change their email signature and to show that I am also using an app that they can use with their students. The beauty of this? It took me less than 5 minutes to create! Thank you Educreations!

How to Support My Teachers with our 1:1 Initiative?

Image from teach.com post

In my last post I shared that we are going 1:1 with iPads in all of our preschool through 5th grade classrooms in our building. Now, my question is how can I lead/support my teachers to use them in meaningful ways to transform learning? We are fortunate to have an Instructional Media Specialist that is extremely helpful in supporting teachers to try a new tool. We also will be investing in training from Certified Apple Trainers. But what can I do?

This past year I did go into a few different classrooms with the iPad cart to “borrow a class of guinea pigs” to try out new apps that I had learned about from my Twitter PLN. I had read about how the app was used in the classroom and wanted to try it in the classroom, while also exposing the teacher to it. I have always felt it has been important for me to not just be in classrooms observing, but to teach and support teachers as well. My goal in this was to also model for teachers to take risks, try new things and reflect/share with colleagues on what worked/what didn’t work.

In my Friday Focus post each week I have also included a section called “Blogs, Pins & Tweets…Oh My!” where I often include ideas on using the iPads.

Over the summer I hope to continue to learn and answer this question: What else can I do to encourage, support and lead teachers with the iPads? Here are some of my current ideas, but I hope some of my PLN (Professional Learning Network) will share ideas with me as well:

  • Start a wikispace this summer to start adding resources/ideas to. I would also give teachers access so they can add to this as well. I just need to figure out how to organize the wiki (i.e. blogs, apps, grade level?)
  • Continue to find app ideas for teachers to use themselves on their iPads. My iPad has become an extension of my arm in terms of how useful it is to me everyday. I’d like to continue to share how it can be a beneficial tool for them.  How can teachers that work with just a few students at a time on specific skills use theirs? For example, our reading interventionists that follows a very prescriptive intervention program will likely not be using the iPads with students, but I’m sure there are productivity apps they would personally benefit from.
  • Always incorporate teacher iPads in our staff meetings somehow. I’d like to plan ahead and create a google doc for each month’s staff meeting agenda, post it on my staff blog and have a part of the agenda be for a staff member to share an app or iPad use from their classroom.
Where will I keep finding my ideas to share with teachers?

Please share if you have any ideas to help me!

We’re Going 1:1 with iPads!!!

Image from Ergatron.com

Can you hear my excitement already? You read that right…we are going 1:1 with iPads in all of our preschool through 5th grade classrooms in our elementary school.

Since I have learned from so many other blogs about integrating technology I plan to share our learning here, but also hope to get input from others on questions that we have.

Here’s what led up to this 1:1 decision:
We are a small district with preK-12 all in one building, which allows us to share technology even though we still function as separate schools in our three separated wings. Over the years we have continued to add technology: each building level has a computer lab and every classroom has a SMARTBoard. This past year we added several carts of devices: Lenovo laptops, netbook minis, Macbook Airs and iPads. This allowed classrooms the opportunity to try out different devices and explore with what device was preferred if we should go 1:1.

Our District Tech Team put in a lot of work this year exploring schools that have gone 1:1 to see what works, what didn’t, etc. They surveyed all staff and all students K-12, using the results to determine that in our district, the best place to start implementing 1:1 would be in our elementary (we did find other districts that started with the high school). This team developed a 3 year plan that ends with our district being 1:1 in every grade. The tech team presented to the school board a couple of different times to build their understanding of this initiative, which led to a unanimous vote for the purchase of the iPads for the elementary next year. Right after this decision was made, we began sharing information on our website for our parents/community to see, which can be found HERE.

So, now that the decision was made, what’s next? Well, our tech people have been working like mad to get this large iPad order ready, along with the admin team planning when to bring in the Apple certified trainers. With any new initiative, the support must be there so we have decided to budget for training from Apple. We also had a logistical meeting with the elementary teachers to discuss how apps will be loaded, how ipads will be stored, etc. Here are some of those logistical details:

  • Each classroom will have an Ergatron charging case.
  • Each iPad will have Otterbox cases
  • iPads will initially be set up with apps by grade level as requested by the grade level team
  • Teachers will have full access to make their teacher iPad their own (this year they had department ipads all with the same apple account so they couldn’t individualize them)
  • As additional apps are requested they will be added to what will basically be our school App Store, which will be created using Casper Software.
  • Additional wifi access points are being put into every classroom so that we have enough bandwidth for all of the additional devices.
  • Every classroom will have an Apple TV to be able to project from any iPad to the SMARTBoard.

I think that’s it for logistics. My next post will be on how can I support my teachers to transform instruction with these new iPads?

If your school or classroom has gone 1:1 are there any logistical issues that you encountered that we should know about? Please share if you do!

Edited to add:
Someone on Twitter asked me if students will be taking the iPads home with them? We have decided that at least for the beginning of this 3 year initiative students will not be bringing them home. A major reason for this is that our K-12 students all ride the same buses home so we were concerned about middle/high school students knowing that our students had iPads in their backpacks and if this could potentially cause theft issues.