Our recent iPad study has included teachers, individual students and class use. This slideshow summarizes our preliminary results, comments from teachers, and benefits and issues of concern. (Our slideshow seems to be malfunctioning, so I will correct it shortly)(postscript: It is now corrected, see at the end of this post).
Recently at Tech Forum Austin, I learned more about Scott Meech’s excellent IEAR.org Educational Apps site, a clearinghouse for apps where community members can share their app knowledge. In working on our study, it quickly became clear the need for resources for finding more educational apps–but as Scott pointed out in his session at Tech Forum, their clearinghouse also provides a place for app creators to see what educators need in terms of new apps. Of course, customized app design can even be incorporated into school curriculum.
It became clear during the short extent of our study thus far the power of the device for libraries, mobile data collection, for small group work, and for special needs students. It’s not like a laptop in those situations, but more like a completely different type of instructional tool–because it is so much more mobile and because of the screen profile and touch screen. Seeing a students’ face light up because he can finally turn a page by himself, or have a book read aloud, or input data on bird sightings on a field trip illustrate the power of the iPad in school settings. See below for our summation of our findings thus far.