Kids Taking Charge of Organizing Tech in the Classroom
Type of technology: iPAD Organization
SAMR Model Rating: Modification/Augmentation
Grade level: All
Subject area: All
Having taught fifth grade for the last five years, implementing technology into the classroom was pretty seamless. The students were given 1:1 iPADS in third grade, so once they came to me, most of the kinks were already worked out. They knew how to use the iPAD, basic typing skills, and how to use search engines. However, moving to third grade this year, I had to adjust. I spent a lot of time brainstorming how to implement technology with some sort of system because these 8 year olds hadn’t been set up with a foundation yet. I realized that I needed to start by figuring out an organizational system with the devices first, and then slowly, implementing bit by bit pieces into daily instruction.
Here are a few steps in setting up technology in the classroom that have worked for me this year.
Each week, as part of classroom jobs, I assign 2 tech coaches. These students are in charge of passing out iPADs each morning, collecting iPADS at the end of each day, and charging the ones bellow 50%. They love this job, and most students want to have an opportunity to do this.
If you have 1:1, this strategy has really helped my students. I assigned each student with a number and that is their iPAD that they use while at school. I used (as you can see below) a small label and tape to past on each iPAD.
I have also had this tactic work when I have only had enough devices for a small group rotation. You can assign a few students to each iPAD/device so they are always using the same one. I believe it gives students the ability to be more responsible for their device. They treat them as an educational tool that they want to use and take care of. If it doesn’t end up getting charged, they realize that they won’t be able to use it! It is their responsibility to take care of this tool that helps with their learning.
Slow and Steady
This has been the toughest for me. I am always the one that wants to jump in on every new application and website I have discovered. With the little ones, I have found, that less really is more. We have started slowly. One afternoon I showed my students how to search up google images and save them to their Camera Roll. They were using these as guides for a project they were working on. This didn’t take me very long to show them how to do, but I gave them the opportunity to play around with it!
Opportunities for Sharing
I give my students the opportunity to show me new things about their iPADs that I didn’t know. We have a lot of apps that get pushed from the district and at times, I haven’t looked at them yet. I give them opportunities to play around with them and demonstrate to the class what they have learned.
The biggest thing I have noticed about this year is how eager my students are to learn new things with technology. I make a conscience effort to give them the time to explore and teach each other (and me too). It has become a lot easier by setting up my classroom in an organized fashion where the students are in charge of their technology. They are taking responsibility for their new learning tools.