Educational Technology in the Classroom

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Tips for how to use educational technology in the classroom? Grab your iPad, Ladybug or classroom clickers and try something new!

Often primary education teachers are afraid to use new classroom technology for fear that their students are too young.

Just watch your students though - they know how to use Google aps, download material, and search for information. Even my youngest child knows his way around iPads aps and how to search for them better than I do sometimes. I realized that when I got a hefty bill from iTunes one day!




iPad Apps for the Classroom

I love my iPads.  There are so many awesome things kids can do with them, including making their own Skitch notes, simple video recording and audio posts.  

The ability to customize each students learning was nearly impossible before having iPads.  Now, with programs like Scoot Pad you can level each student for a 1:1 learning situation and flipped classroom experience.

Like all teachers, I have some of my favorites that I go to every year.

  • Swapsies™ - Spinlight Studio
    This is a darling app and it is perfect for preschool and kindergarten. As the children dress the workers, they learn coordination, reasoning and processing skills.

  • Comic Touch
    Use pictures from your classroom or subject you are studying and turn it into a creative writing experience. Kids add thought bubbles, move pictures and make their learning a hilarious experience.

  • Kids Maps - Map Puzzle Game
    This is an interactive puzzle that makes learning geography a snap. They learn quick facts about the United States while moving the pieces into place.

  • TanZen
    Develop spatial reasoning and shape awareness with Tangrams. There are over 500 puzzles, ranging from easy to very difficult. Perfect for differentiation in the classroom!

Laptops in the Classroom

I have a personal preference for Chromebooks in my room.  They are dead easy for little kids to use, yet sophisticated enough for anyone to do some awesome projects on.

If you are really serious about teaching 21st Century Skills, you have to provide a way for students to immerse themselves into digital learning that requires drag, drop, editing, manipulating data and creation of collaborative projects.  

Here is my review of why Chromebooks are a perfect laptop for school in the 21st Century.


Classroom Clickers


Most people think of classroom clickers as a type of technology reserved for upper grades.

This type of educational technology in the classroom can actually be used in a variety of simple ways.


Classroom clickers are small hand-held devices that give students an opportunity to generate a simple response to a question. They are generally used with an interactive whiteboard.

But...with your iPad, iPhone and iTouch your lesson plans can be instantly turned into an adaptive educational experience. iResponse - Classroom Responder System can even help teachers differentiate their lessons on the spot, and it is really easy to use.


Assistive Technology in the Classroom

Dragon

I can't say enough about this. I first heard of Dragon a few years ago when one of my students needed it to write. Now I use it when creating a page for Primary Education Oasis.

It took me about 15 minutes to install it, complete the voice recognition, and now I can "talk out" my pages as they come to me.


What Dragon does is allow you to train it to understand your unique pronounciation of words, you then dictate into a headset, and the words are typed for you on the screen.

It is so cool (like a toy almost!). You even say all the commands for when you want periods, new paragraph, fonts, etc.

There are so many types of kids who can benefit from this: those who have writing disabilities, issues with orthography, are dyslexic, or even gifted kids who think faster than their hands can write.

There is also a free iPhone ap for Dragon that works surprisingly well.










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