Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Content consumption on the iPad

Last week, I suggested that the iPad was great for both content consumption and content creation.  Consuming content -- text, audio, and video -- seems to be what the iPad was designed for (and it allows for it to be done quite beautifully, I might add).

This short TED talk by Mike Matas: A next-generation digital book amazed me when I saw it.  Imagine student textbooks that could work like this prototype, allowing students to read, view both still images and video, and completely personalize their learning experience.

Just imagine...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Content creation on the iPad

"What are students going to be doing with their iPads when they get them?"

That's the most frequent question I am asked when talking with people our move to 1:1 with iPads.  The simplest answer I can give:  students will be consuming content and creating content.

In this podcast from Tony Vincent, Project Based Learning in Hand Part 1, he shares step-by-step how he used only his iPod Touch to create content, a five minute video on the topic "What Makes a Good Vice President."  The same apps that he used on his iPod Touch can be used on an iPad.

After viewing, take a minute to leave a comment and share your thoughts about how your students might use the same process on their iPads in your classroom.

Next week, we'll take a look at the content consumption side: a next-generation eBook that's being developed for the iPad.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

PBL in the Elementary Grades

Last month, Tony introduced us to project-based learning (PBL).  For most of us, PBL is either a new idea or an idea we are slightly familiar with but are wondering what it would like in our own classroom.  The Buck Institute for Education offers a couple of books to help us wrap our heads around PBL.  They introduce their elementary level book with the following:
Would you like to conduct effective Project Based Learning in your classroom, but feel unsure how to start? Or have you tried "doing a project" but it didn't turn out the way you wanted? Or have you done PBL in the past, but you're looking for new ideas or a more systematic process of planning and managing projects, to meet the demands of today's world of standards and testing? If your answer is "yes" to any of the above, this book is meant for you.

Designed for teachers of Kindergarten through 5th grade students, PBL in the Elementary Grades contains down-to-earth, classroom-tested advice, including sample projects, step-by-step guidance, tips from experienced practitioners, and planning tools.
I ordered a copy of the book earlier in the week after reading the Introduction (free download).  Send me a note if you're interested in reading it along with other ZPS teachers.  For middle and high school teachers, BIE also publishes the PBL Starter Kit for those who are new to PBL.

Happy summer reading!