What does a lesson with iPads look like in the Modern Foreign Language classroom?
We all know that every lesson is different and yes, in my classroom we do creative app smashing things and hugely creative things with our iPads but a normal, for want of a better word, lesson with iPads as a tool looks a bit like this…
Y10 French GCSE preparing for written controlled assessment about holidays.
O9:10 – Students enter the room collect an iPad from the trolley, log onto the Internet filter and scan a QR code displayed on the interactive white board. This is all perfectly routine and the students just get on with it. The code links to a pre prepared Google form containing questions about the verb aller. Whilst all this is happening I take the register.
09:15 All the answers have appeared in my answers spreadsheet on Google docs. I quickly pass the Google add on, Flubaroo over the form and it marks it for me. From here I can see which students have a good knowledge of the verb Aller and which don’t. I share the lesson objectives with the class – we will be working on forming the future tense in French.
09:20 I share the results of the Google form quiz with the class and we discuss why we may need the verb Alber to form the future tense. I leave all questions unanswered and ask students to go to educanon.com
09:25 Students connect to a “bulb” that I have created for them in Educanon.com. Educanon is a Web 2.0 tool that allows you to add questions to a video, the video pauses as students answer the questions. Y10 watch a YouTube clip about forming the near future tense in French and answer questions regarding the clip. I meanwhile, can monitor their answers on my laptop.
09:35 All students have finished the video exercise and we come together as a class to discuss what we have watched. I can see from the educanon feedback form that 90% of students have a good understanding of the grammar point.
09:40 Students are asked to create a short screecast using the Showme app explaining how to form and use the near perfect tense in French. They all log on to the same account but they could all log on individually and email you the results. Whilst the students are working on this I head over to the students who appear to not yet have fully grasped the concept for a quick chat to try and clarify things.
09:55 Students finish off their screencasts and email themselves a copy for their files. We have discussion about what we have learnt today. They plug their iPads into charge and are on their way at 10am
I now have some real tangible evidence, in the form of a screencast, as to how much the students have understood about the lesson. I spend an hour that evening watching them all and noting down misconceptions ready for discussion in the follow up lesson the next day.
We don’t always use iPads in my classroom, sometimes a pen and paper works just fine however, the beauty of the iPad or any other mobile device for that matter is the ability to be able to “observe” the actions of the students and feedback instantaneously, allowing us as teachers to correct mistakes and misconceptions quickly and easily. It also allows us to direct our help to the students that most need it and most importantly, the results can bring about some hugely interesting classroom discussions.
iPads are simply another classroom tool but used effectively and wisely they can have a huge affect on lesson outcomes and thereby learning in the classroom.