Zack Gilbert has volunteered to blog about his experience with the Touch device as he begins to use it in his personal and professional life. Here is the beginning of his story. Thanks for letting us take a closer look at your experience Zack ...
... A little information about me-
- I will be starting my 14th year of teaching this fall, 2009. I am currently teaching 6th grade social studies (ancient civilizations) and language arts. I am a building technologist and I help problem solve technology difficulties within my building.
- M.S. in Instructional Technology - Illinois State University, 2008
The field of education has slowly and reluctantly taken advantage of new advances and innovations. Many times technology has been used wisely and many times it has not. Iear.org is dedicated to one small piece of computer software and hardware. Why are educators fascinated with the IPhone/ITouch?
Interest…by students and educators. That is what led us to Iear.org.
As educators we need to be careful that we are not using these devices just to use them, but we should have the end in mind. What are the learning goals? What do we want our students to know when they are done with the lesson? You can have a lot of fun with an IPod, but that does not mean you are learning. IPods are not an easy way out and they are not the golden ticket. They are one piece in an overwhelming learning environment. (Sorry….my diatribe is over)
In the beginning of the summer I was asked to join a small group of teachers to look at new technologies and how they could be used in the classroom. One of these devices is an IPod touch. This group would use these devices for the summer and help teach another group of teachers throughout the district. This is a great format to see the practicality of these gadgets within the classroom. If the data shows viability, then a larger implementation can occur.
So what apps and other tools have I used for educational purposes? How did I test these apps? As a father of two elementary school children, I had willing participants. I am only going to write about a few apps in this post, but I will add more on a later date.
Education Apps (Remember I have the IPod Touch):
- Instant Interactive Math Drills Ver. 1.3 (by Instant Interactive)
- Wonderful app for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Has review, practice, and test areas and can keep track of your progress. You can add students and have multiple options of how the problems are presented. My youngest, who will be in kindergarten this fall, uses the hints area and now understands a basic number line for addition and subtraction. You could use this app at many grade levels.
- Google Earth
- As a social studies teacher, this is a great way to put the world in your hands. I still like the desktop version better, but so much geography can be taught from this app.
- Open Culture
- From the site www.openculture.com - Open Culture explores cultural and educational media (podcasts, videos, online courses, etc.) that’s freely available on the web, and that makes learning dynamic, productive, and fun. We sift through all the media, highlight the good and jettison the bad, and centralize it in one place. Trust us, you’ll find engaging content here that will keep you learning and sharp. And you will find it much more efficiently than if you spend your time searching with Google, Yahoo or iTunes.
- DoBot ToDos (I would just use the Google Tasks if I was always connect with an IPhone)
- Google Mobile App- Most (if not all) of Google at your fingertips.
I want to write so much more, but my time is short. My next post will go into more detail about the apps above and some new ones.
Questions, comments, and rants????
Parkside Junior High School
zgilbert.mail @ gmail.com (purposely not linked properly to help prevent SPAM)
... Once again, thanks Zack for giving us a window into your experience. We agree wholeheartedly that we don't want to juse use these devices to simply use them. I Education Apps Review is all about taking a real look at the viability of these devices and applications. Great stuff ... We look forward to reading more about your experience moving forward!
... Disclaimer - Zack's opinion is his own and is reflecting his own personal experience. Zack and I Education Apps Review have no official affiliation with any company and we do not accept any monetary funds beyond "donated" apps. We are all teachers trying to help each other out as we look at the educational value of these devices and applications. See I Education Apps Review's disclaimer for more information.