iPad Trial 2 – Starting to Evaluate

ipadimageIt might seem like a bit of a leap from my first post of introducing the trial to the second one being starting to evaluate, but it has been a hectic few months with so many things going on. I will still break down and share findings in future posts such as useful apps etc. but in the meantime we are meeting as a group this week and on the agenda is the initial stage of evaluation.

To try and draw together thoughts and ideas there are a number of questions we are going to discuss as a group and as we continue with the trial we need to think about potential next steps and how we could move things forward.

The questions we are going to be considering are:

EVALUATING THE iPAD TRIAL – The story so far….
(a) Teaching using the iPad

1. How has the iPad helped fulfil general admin tasks as a teacher, has it made everyday life easier?
2. How have iPads enhanced the learning experience of your students? Have they? Could they?
3. Is there anything that has held you back in getting the most out of using the iPad as a Teaching and Learning tool?
4. Is there anything that you can do with the iPad that is not possible or is more difficult to achieve without it?

(b) Potential for student use?
5. What further potential does the iPad have for transforming learning opportunities for students in the way we teach?
6. Do you feel students could make good use of iPads in your subject area? If so in what kinds of ways?
7. In what ways does the iPad have potential to support students? SEN? Gifted and Talented? A’level students etc..?

MOVING FORWARD
8. What technical issues / problems have arisen when using the iPad which need addressing?
9. Are there any particular concerns over e-safety and use of the iPads by students that need to be considered?
10. What would be the main goals of any future iPad implementation? Engagement, access to digital textbooks, access to digital environments, watching videos / listening to audio; media production (editing of photos / video), or a mixture?
11. What do would be the main challenges in increasing use of iPads / implementing use with students?
12. Will iPad use always require forward planning? Or have you found tools which you would be able to naturally integrate into lessons when needed (adding to the teachers everyday toolkit)?

… and so the next stage in the trial commences!

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iPad Trial – 1. Aim of the project

This academic year I am co-ordinating a small scale iPad trial in school with a  group of 12 teachers looking at the potential use of iPads in the classroom. We are meeting on a regular basis to share good practise and collectively look at and evaluate the potential use of iPad’s in enhancing teaching and learning in the classroom, whilst also facilitating the general role of the teacher. I would be very interested to hear from any other teachers that have been using iPads in the classroom and what their experience has been. As part of the trial I am researching and trying to draw together links to existing research, trials  and other online documents relating to the use of iPads in the classroom.

One local school in Cambridge (The Stephen Perse Foundation) has already rolled out a 1-1 iPad project, and examples of how the iPads are being used are summarised in the video below.

Another example where significant research has already been carried out is at Longfield Academy in Kent where the impact of iPads in the school has been measured over a couple of terms and research carried out on behalf of NAACE has been summarised as a report “The iPad – A Tool for Education”

Our trial is very small scale in comparison, with only a small number of teachers involved and only one iPad being available in the classroom, but I am looking forward to seeing how the iPads can be put to good use. We are already beginning to see benefits and I am hoping to record our ‘iPad journey’ and thoughts through fairly regular posts on here.

This useful scoop it page “How schools are using iPads in education in the UK” is a particularly interesting and uptodate set of links with regards to the use of iPads in education and one which is well worth keeping an eye on and I am also tweeting any particularly useful links I find on my @RobGeog account.

Think piece on Revision Practises and Online Video

Further to my previous post regarding new research from O2 Learn, they have published a very interesting think piece called “Review of Revision Practises and the value of Video Lessons” which is well worth a read. Some really interesting points at a particular pertinent time in the school year as we are preparing students for the public exam.s

New Research from O2 Learn – “Too little too late – school pupils fall short of teachers’ revision advice”

O2 Learn (www.o2learn.co.uk) is an innovative education initiative designed to celebrate the UK’s finest teaching and create a lasting learning resource that can help young people achieve their ambitions. Teachers are encouraged to upload and share videos of their best lessons on the e-learning hub. The ambition is to build Britain’s biggest classroom online, giving young people everywhere, from all backgrounds, access to inspiring teaching.

O2 Learn has conducted three surveys with parents, pupils and teachers about revision patterns and also some desk research into revision best practice, memory and learning styles. Some of the main findings include:

– Students generally are falling short of teachers recommended time spent on revision.  The teachers surveyed, suggested starting on average six weeks in advance and studying on average 8 hours per week (7.7) totalling 46.2 hours. This is 7 hours more than is currently being achieved by students.

– Parents play a far greater role in their children’s revision today with well over three quarters of parents (86%) actively involved. This compares with more than half of adults (58%) who had no involvement at all from their parents in their revision.

– Teachers receive very little formal guidance in relation to how to support students with revision.

Young people are developing different learning styles from previous generations due to a greater use of technology. Despite this, just one in three (32%) young people use online study guides and only one in ten (12%) is turning to online video to support their study.

– Teachers also identified a number of benefits that resources such as online videos and video clips deliver including:

  • The ability to watch them more than once (82%)
  • Seeing things being explained (68%)
  • Being able to pause, rewind, fast forward (68%)
  • The fact that they’re free (59%)

– Video resources, such as O2 Learn, that combine verbal and visual information could be ideally suited to young peoples’ learning styles. Research suggests that multisensory learning brings particular advantages for memory.

Experts believe that the parental support that students receive now needs to be matched by adopting a more varied mix of revision methods to be truly effective.

Sir Mark Grundy, the Executive Principal of Shireland Collegiate Academy, said: “There has been research for a number of years highlighting how people learn in a multi-faceted way.  The multiple intelligences models have existed for some time, but the resources to support this blend of styles have not been available – until now!
“In the last few years Learning Platforms have evolved and are now capable of acting as the glue to stick resources together and as importantly to present them at precisely the right time.  Most students need a framework to support their revision and resources which present the same ideas in many different ways.
“By putting the O2Learn resources in your learning platform and delivering them to students this has to help our students to achieve at higher levels.”

Gav Thompson, creator of O2 Learn, said: “As we reach the heart of the revision period, at O2 Learn we want to make sure that young people and their parents are taking advantage of the unprecedented range of online tools and resources now available to make learning easier and more efficient.
“Teachers and experts are agreed on the value of online learning to complement more traditional methods.  Whether its pupils wanting to tackle a tough question in an accessible way at all hours, or a parent looking for an easy way to help their child revise interactively, the value of digital learning is clear.  Our research today shows that we are in danger of missing an opportunity to bring revision to the next level and I want O2 Learn to play as big a part as possible in helping that happen.”

Remember O2 learn holds a competition for teaching awarding £1000 each week for the best lesson uploaded. See this previous post for more details.