Thursday, September 12, 2013

iPads to Drive Learning

The iPad has proven to be an amazing tool for capturing student learning and for providing students with the opportunity to be creative and innovative learners. Sharing content off the iPad, however can be quite a chore.

For schools that use Google Apps, Google Drive can prove to be a great solution to sharing content created on the iPads and even as a possible solution for creating Digital Portfolios. Drive provides a great place for storage and sharing and the app continues to improve in its ability for students to create content and to collaborate with one another.

In addition to Drive, some schools have turned to Blogger as a way to share content from iPads for student portfolios. The app, though limited on mobile devices, enables students and teachers to upload content. It is also possible to set up blogs so that posts can be sent directly through email.

I created the interactive image below using Thinglink, to illustrate some great apps that integrate well with both Drive and Blogger. These apps promote student creativity and provide teachers with a number of useful tools to capture student learning.

Before integrating technology in the classroom, I encourage all teachers to familiarize themselves with the ISTE NETS and with frameworks of technology integration such as the SAMR model. This will help guide them in better understanding what good technology integration looks like and the 21st century learning skills which they should be focusing on. It is important that they understand that the use of technology is not about the technology itself. Rather, they should see it as a tool go assist educators with enhancing student learning. Whenever using the iPad in the classroom, do not use an app as your starting point or the goal. Think about what you want your students to learn and then use the best tool for the job.