Type of technology: iPad
SAMR Model Rating: Substitution
Grade level: K-6
Subject area: Math
Cost: free for addition; $1.99 for package
At Monroe, learning to share is part and parcel of using technology. The students use the ChromeBooks in shifts and hand them over to the next user at regularly scheduled intervals or work in small groups. While we can drool over some of the ideas of flipped classrooms and such, many of the best apps and creative teaching ideas are designed for one-to-one classrooms — and there are not even enough computers in the computer lab to accommodate all 33 students at once.
In looking for a way to incorporate independent math fact practice, it occurred to me that the lone iPad in the room could be useful as a pass-along math tester, and I looked for apps that would be easy to use. I previewed — and liked — Timed Test. Students log in to their own account; take a quick daily test on addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division; and track their own progress. The iPad is passed from student to student, allowing everyone to test math facts daily.
Timed Test has a retro blackboard design and flexible testing options: range of numbers, length of test, and instant feedback. It is easy to use for students, has tokens for incentive, and does not use instructional time for remediation of skills that should have been mastered prior to sixth grade. While this app is low on the SAMR rating, it gets high marks for usefulness as a tool in the classroom.