From the time I got off the plane in Minneapolis and was greeted by Cathy, the magic began. We could barely wait to be seated at the Good Earth Restaurant before whipping out our iPads and launching into an endless round of show and tell. Truth be told, we didn’t wait. We whipped them out while waiting for a table. Middle-aged geeks and loving it!
The magic continued the next morning when we began our “official” show and tell with all the teachers and their iPads. For anyone doing an iPad workshop where all participants have their own iPads, an opening forum where people get to browse each other’s app collections is a perfect launch! From there, in my opinion, we had the perfect day.
After learning about how to be great consumers in the app store (how to read between the lines of ratings, reviews, and lists), we began the first phase of exploration and investigation that will lead to a teaching protocol. Keeping in mind that the magic is in the teaching, we began our focus on 3 key questions related to our student’s learning.
As a result of using the iPad with this particular app:
- What new skill(s) has the student acquired? And FYI, “being engaged” is not a skill on it’s own. Being engaged in order to do something is key. That “doing something” is the skill. As I ask my graduate students every year, “For the sake of what?” does that child need to attend to something?
- What current skill is increasing/improving and/or how is a current skill generalizing to other skills.
- What challenging behavior has been changed?