Wednesday, December 18, 2013

iPad Showcase for Parents

My students have been working on their iPads since the beginning of September.  Learning to create on the iPads has been a gradual process and I have been extremely excited about the learning that is taking place in my classroom.  My students have taken charge of their learning.  They are starting to do more of the work.  They are taking the information they are learning and showcasing it through a variety of apps and projects.

The students have work they were very proud of and they were anxious to share it with their parents, so we decided to invite parents and grandparents into our classroom for breakfast and an iPad showcase.  We brainstormed apps and projects the students wanted to show their parents.

Our agenda for the morning
When the families arrived in the morning, students and parents enjoyed breakfast as I gave a quick explanation of each of the apps and how they are used.  Then I let the students steal the show.  The parents were amazed watching their kids navigate through their iPads.  I heard so many parents say "That's really cool!," "Wow! You did that?!" "I'm so proud of you!."  It was a great experience for my students and their parents.  The parents were able to see the learning that is taking place in my classroom.  They were able to see how the iPads can be used with the curriculum and how they make differentiation immediate and purposeful.  My students each had a devoted audience member for about an hour that they were able to showcase their learning to.  They were talking about their learning with their parents.  I don't think these conversations would be happening if it wasn't for the iPads.

     This morning was a wonderful experience for the parents and students.  The parents enjoyed sharing in their child's learning and it was an opportunity for them to see what has been happening in the classroom.  I think this iPad Showcase helped parents have a better understanding of how we are using the iPads in our classroom.  I enjoyed having them in our classroom and I am looking forward to doing it again next quarter.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Teaching Perspective

Today I had to take on the challenge of teaching perspective to my students in math.  This is a fairly easy concept, but it seems to be something my students' young 4th grade minds have trouble grasping. Fortunately, my students had iPads and the app Doceri to help them gain a greater understanding.

I started the lesson by creating an object with cubes.  I then used the camera on my iPad to show the students the different perspectives of the object.  As a class, the students each drew an example of what the perspective was of the object from the side, top and front on their Whiteboard app.  After they became familiar with the vocabulary, I gave the students a pile of cubes and had them design a 3-D object that had a variety of height and depth.  Once they designed their objects, they created a slide in Doceri to describe each view.   The students enjoyed creating their objects and were amazed by how much the perspective changed from one to another.

Click Here for an example of a Doceri project on perspective.