Yesterday, I rolled out the iPods to my other class of Seniors. I am teacher of record for them, but I do not work with them due to my duties as the district’s Technology Integrator. The ground rules for the iPod cart were that for the iPods to be used I had to be in the class with them. That negated the use of iPods with several of my classes.
I felt bad about the students not having access to the iPods, and I looked for a way around the issue. I also decided, maybe incorrectly, that allowing the students to use them once every month would be worse than not using them at all. Due to my schedule between the buildings, that would be about all the time they would get.
The Seniors were a bit offended when I first started showing them what to do, a comment was made about, “What? you don’t think we have seen iPods before?” To which I responded, ” Have you ever used them for school?”
They knew the basics of the iPods, moving about, zooming and unzooming the screen. I showed them the apps we use and how to work with them. They caught on very quickly and ran with the technology. My sub and I co-taught the class, facilitating the flow of information and helping students with technology issues that would arise. One of the students who was previously offended at our attitude commented, “This is really weird, learning about iPods from an old person. No offense Sal.” I just laughed. I reiterated the fact that they don’t use them for school, but that they were quick studies.
Overall, the class was a success. The students caught on and moved away from just listening to information and maybe commenting, to jumping in and presenting their own ideas from what they found on the iPods. The class ran similar to my other classes, the students took ownership of the class and were fully participating. I hope to roll them out with the sophomores later this week.