When I was given an iPad to use within my classroom I was quite sceptical about the effective use of it and why I may need it to deliver more engaging lessons. As I am a bit of a tech geek at heart I embraced it and started to read up about which apps have been tried and tested. This way I could minimise the risk and use apps which have been reviewed. To my surprise by investigating further and joining the school iPad group it was easy to identify some cool apps which are now used as second nature. Some I would not know how to perform without now. Here are my top 6 at the moment:
Pocket cloud allows you to link SIMS to your iPad. This is great as you can move around the room whilst taking the register. This way your starter and PowerPoint / presenting tools can be ready to go on the board. Makes the start easier and transitions smooth.
Evernote is a great app which you can photograph and store messages / documents. This way you can take shots of pupils work save it and share it. You can make notes and it saves them in date order. A great storage device to keep work and organise your work with reminders.
Socrative allows you to assess students and show rapid progress within a lesson. You create quizzes or killer questions. Students join your room and you get instant feedback. You can see who answered correctly, you can show stats and you can get students to debate and then answer again. This way you can instantly see progress. Use alongside your Apple TV to show students feedback.
Explain everything. A great app which allows you to control multiple apps at once. When used with an Apple TV you can switch between each app by using the toggle buttons at the bottom. So you can get into your Google drive as well as drop box. You can load all your lesson plans onto it via a WebDAV. No need to store all lessons on memory stick. It is kept live in your area.
Tiny Scan. This app is fantastic in turning student’s work or documents into PDF files. It allows you to attach the pdf’s and send from you email. I regularly use this to scan articles and circulate to students. I have used it a lot to snap work and show students what good work looks like.
Finally the Google drive. This app on the iPad is excellent in accessing your docs easily. Some tips when storing work from students: I create a folder and share this with the group. They then set up a folder within that folder and make sure they only share their folder with you. They can then drop all their work into this folder. This is great because: 1) It creates a portfolio of their work. 2) Only you can see it. 3) There is unlimited storage. 4) You don’t get sent an email every time they send you work. Then if you use Google forms as a way of marking their work you can send them individual feedback and it leaves a timestamp all done on the iPad within the lesson. I am starting to work with a new function in Google forms called Frubaroo which electronically marks the work. Brilliant for tests as it will save hours of marking time with one press of a button.
I will follow up with a Blog on Google forms and speed of marking using Google apps next time. Any questions or demos please feel free to speak to me and I will be happy to show you.
Nicholas Berryman @BerrymanNick
Deputy Head of House Newton
Teacher of Business and Enterprise