Having been teaching with a tablet in my classroom for nearly a year it has become evident that the market for Education apps still isn’t quite right. I think this is most evident in the fact that the course I run training teachers to use an iPad effectively in the classroom features almost no ‘education’ apps. I do one session (out of 7) that revolves around subject-specific apps, but other than this, the apps that are used on a day-to-day basis are commercial, and often free.
The key to successful technology integration in schools is to get the staff on board. To get the staff on board, you need to show them how much easier life becomes with the technology, as well as how much better/enhanced the learning can be. There will always be a core group of teachers who get on board without much fuss and these people are what keep you sane when you’re trying to push things forward. I will discuss the role of ‘champions’ in a future post.
Back to what we need to get devices functioning at a higher level in a classroom. My wish list includes the following:
Finding the best education technology tools is a time-consuming task. It may even be viewed as a chore (for some). Typically, one tracks down a handful of useful apps or web tools and puts them through their paces at home. Then you probably don’t use any of them because each tool took far too long to understand, use, become accustomed to, and actually implement in a classroom.
That’s why I was so excited to find this Symbaloo created by user lcobbs detailing 50 great classroom tools that are all easy to implement into just about any classroom. From Animoto to Prezi to Dropbox to Stixy (wait what?), there’s a lot to check out. Don’t know all 50 tools? I didn’t! Click on each icon to get an idea about each tool and learn more.