Last night I enjoyed the mobile learning session presented by Rob De Lorenzo as part of the OSSEMOOC professional learning series.
After the session I went the the chat transcript and picked out a few phrases that resonated with me. They are:
- it is so important that community creates the learning
- the “any’s” — anytime, anywhere, anyone, anything learning
- love that idea – learning languages on social media.
- The need for administrators to be involved in the process is critical.
- technology empowerment of teachers is critical to reach our tech hungry students
- The computer lab is an artifact. We’ve moved beyond the need for it.
- Wifi is a game changer.
- No need for uniform platform anymore – different tools for different tasks
- let them bring the devices they are comfortable with.
- You choose the device that will best let you do that”
- No tech can replace carefully thought out lessons and teaching strategies!
- mobile productivity
Which phrase(s) resonate with you? Why?
Now, an invitation, or perhaps a challenge depending on your viewpoint. Share your thoughts by leaving a comment on this post or consider writing a blog of your own to share your thinking. If you choose to blog, please share a link to your post.
Listen to the archived recording of Mobile Learning .
This week I had an opportunity to ‘kick the tires’ on the Adobe Connect Pro Mobile client. I downloaded the free client to my iPod Touch and iPhone.
I started a host session on our Board’s server via my laptop. Next, I logged into the session with my iPhone over the 3G network and via wifi with my iPod Touch. Both mobile devices responded well. Audio transmission from the host session was clear, and the available modes of video, chat and screen share all functioned well. In video mode, you see the image transmitted by the host web cam. Chat mode allows you to read and enter text chat information, the same as you would sitting at a computer. Screen mode displays the image being presented via a screen share at the host end.
Later in day, I had a chance to try a more involved session with @dougpete. For this session, Doug hosted a session where we connected 5 users – Doug’s iPhone and iPod Touch, my laptop, iPod Touch and iPhone. Again, performance over both the 3G network and wifi worked well. Doug experimented by showing a powerpoint slide show as well as a graphic calculator. Chat and video modes worked well also.
The 1.0 version of the client is quite functional. Audio level settings needed some adjustment to optimize the session communication clarity. We found using the standard earbud style headphones worked better than the speaker audio.
The only issue we found was there was no voice input on the mobile devices. Documentation referred to toggling mute on/mute off to control the mobile voice access. However, we found the icon (see graphic below – 3rd icon from the right in the top row) to allow access to the controls was not actually visible to use. I am sure this will be corrected in a later version.
Overall, very impressive for a 1.0 version free client. I think this opens up a lot of possibilities for mobile learning.
As momentum continues to build for the use of mobile handheld device in the classroom, it is important for teachers, IT leaders and administrators to share:
- projects and activities
- curriculum context
- instructional strategies
- learnings: what worked, what should be changed, what to avoid
- best applications
- best practice for maintaining a class set of iPods
One of the areas that interests me is the overall direction that people tend to take with these projects. In my mind, many of the available applications fall into the ‘drill and kill’ repetition category. Extensive use of drill based software in is opposition to the ISTE nets standards being adopted in many Boards. The ISTE Nets standards for students promote foundational ICT skills in the areas of:
- Creativity and Innovation
- Communication and Collaboration
- Research and Information Fluency
- Critical Thinking, Problem Solving and Decision Making
- Digital Citizenship
- Technology Operations and Concepts
I hope that professional collaboration and sharing will keep the use of mobile tools in the classroom pointed in a positive learning direction. Certainly, having a room full of students with mobile learning devices in hand will fundamentally change the way one teaches. Perhaps learning about what this new teaching model looks like and defining best practices in this arena are a key component of moving forward. Lets not repeat mistakes and reinvent the wheel over and over. Share and collaborate!!!
I have list four online forums that I initially started reading in the summer. I have joined each one and now read them regularly. I hope you find some of the information and collaboration opportunities worthwhile.
iPods in the Classroom
iPod for Educators
iPod Touch Schoolwide Implementation on Classroom 2.0
In our Board, we have had many literacy and writing successes with students involved in the blogging process as part of their course work. Teachers indicate that students:
- are more engaged
- are more likely to participate in the class activity
- demonstrate improvement in their writing skills
- are more likely to enter into dialogue about their reading materials
All of these success indicators point to involving more teachers and students in incorporating blogging as a literacy strategy. In order to achieve growth in this area, staff and students need to have sufficient access to technology to facilitate the blogging process and at the time you need it.
Possibilities: Meeting this need becomes a key ingredient in the success formula. Along with some other staff at our Board, I have been looking at affordable ways to do this. One option would be to use an iPod touch (with classroom wireless access). There are currently 3 applications available for the iPod – WordPress, Blogwriter Lite and Blogwriter.
Software Application Cost: WordPress and Blogwriter Lite are free applications. Blogwriter is $1.99 CDN.
Other factors: Of course, training, assessment, support and sustainability are components of this picture too.
I am going to spend a little time reviewing and testing each application to see how feasible this approach might be. I will share what I learn in a future post. Off to start experimenting and learning about blogging with iPods.
Earlier in the summer, I posted ‘iPod Roundup’, a collection of resources and ideas for using iPod technology in the classroom. Since then, I have run across a few more sites and blog posts related to this topic. The resources are listed below.
The Digital Backpack: voice recorder ideas
Teacher Magazine: Adding a ‘Touch’ of Technology
Newhartford Schools: iPods in the Classroom
School CIO: Getting Started with iPods in the Classroom
My earlier post: iPod Roundup
As we cross the midpoint of the summer, my thoughts turn to projects for the next school year. One of our initiatives will include more extensive work with iPods in the classroom. I have been checking net based resources over the last month and thought I would share some of the links in today’s post.
iPod Touch: School wide Implementation Classroom 2.0
on Ning: iPods in the Classroom
on Ning iPod Teachers
Why iPods? K-12 project
Classroom project (with commentary) iPod Touch Project
iPod Touch Classroom Mobile Learning
iPod survey Google spreadsheet back end
Interactive multimedia iPods and whiteboards
The Wired Educator: iPod in every classroom
The Wired Educator: iPod Touch in the classroom
David Warlick: a blog post
Ed Tech Bytes: Managing a Class Set
Enjoy the reading!