"That's cool! How does that work?" is an expression I love to hear from students. Even better, is being able to give students a chance to experience it for themselves and to try to figure out "Why?" or "How? on their own.
My students are a very culturally diverse group, with students in our district speaking over 60 different languages.
Most students (greater than 75%) are from families who struggle economically. Many are also English language learners, and mixed in with these are also gifted and talented students. What they all have in common, is a need to contribute and be involved in the learning process. At our urban school, we have a lot of pride in our accomplishments, which are achieved by everyone working toward a common goal: excellence!
Using technology is second nature to most students, but the lack of it in classrooms is frustrating. Our school district has access to several on-line learning tools and apps, but not all students have access to the hardware to be able to use them on a regular basis. Adding another iPad to the few that we have will allow more students to get on-line and participate, as well as get more timely feedback on assignments and assessments.
Technology gets even the most reluctant learners involved.
One app that we use is for students to take part in scavenger hunts where they take pictures and videos of different topics to show their learning. I have never seen students as animated and involved as when they were using this app. Having to share iPads with several teachers makes this difficult to do very often, so each additional iPad gets us closer to more routine technology based activities and more active and involved students. When students are involved, they learn.
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