Apps · digital technologies · iPads · teaching and learning

On the search for that something special

Flickr by Langwitches

Flickr Langwitches

Today I’ve been working on stage 3 of my Unit plan for Assessment 2 in ICT and Pedagogy. My unit plan is implementing Biological Sciences for Year 2 with the underpinning Science Understanding criteria focus of Living things and the initiating content descriptor Living things grow, change and have offspring similar to themselves (ACSSU030). The ICT component of the unit plan is represented by only one content descriptor- Use informal measurements to collect and record observations, using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS039).  The phrase ‘as appropriate’ is muddy to me. This could mean anything really. I looked back to the beginning of the content descriptor- Use informal measurements to collect and record observations. From my experience in early years classrooms at my workplace, informal measurements may take the form of Interlocking cubes, blocks, paperclips, linking chains, foot or hand span and the list goes on.

OK, so now what, using digital technologies as appropriate, hmm. The first idea that pops to mind is capturing these observations digitally through the use of a camera, video or similar tool of a digital device such as a tablet. These days, many children know how to navigate their way around a tablet and take photos (they might be photos of their feet or the cat but still), open apps to play games, even Face Time with relatives in faraway places. So my next question is how am I going to make this more interesting, unique and transforming for the students?

Now I’ve spent the morning searching the internet for interactive, informative and engaging activities and experiences to enhance content delivery- (teaching) and engage students in ways that facilitate construction of new learning when using informal measurements and collecting observations.  Firstly, WOW, how time can fly while you investigate and evaluate the multitude of resources available to you.

I’ve searched Scootle for links, and checked out You Tube for videos and catchy songs for visual and auditory learning types and googled interactive photo apps. I started playing around with Book Creator but when it came to using graphing tools, I came to a hurdle. I envisioned the children would be able to apply a grid overlay over captured images to use in a way that captured growth or change in an innovative way, but I just couldn’t get the app to do it.

I was just about to start another google search of art or photo apps that had a feature like this and the ability to share when my almost nine year old son said nonchalantly, “I use Keynote for that”. Thanks D.

Now to begin exploring Keynote. I’ll be back to update you with the next installment soon.

Wish me luck.




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