I am using a Logitech keyboard with my iPad to type this post. It feels like a real keyboard and certainly has other advantages. For instance, it is easy to plug in, and it works right away. There is no Bluetooth involved. I also like that I can see the entire screen when typing a longer document. For someone my age who is used to a keyboard, I can type faster and more accurately.
The keyboard has some disadvantages as well. As I am typing, I can hear the plastic sound of the keys. Conversely, when typing on the glass on the iPad, it is silent. In addition, the keyboard is not connected to the iPad in a carrying case so it would be hard to carry it around from class to class. I wish the keyboard were thinner and the keys were more like the ones on the MacBook Pro laptop. It would be interesting if it could just clip to the iPad in some way to carry together. As a 6th grade language arts teacher, I can see how the keyboard would be helpful for younger students who are transitioning to typing on the iPad. However, in my experience, students adapt very quickly to typing on the glass. Another observation is that the cord is short. If I wanted to type with my iPad on my desk and the keyboard in my lap, the cord would not be long enough. As an aside, I do realize that proper posture would mean both the iPad and the keyboard would ideally be on a desk or table.
I think the Logitech keyboard is a resource and a tool that is worth having access to in a classroom where writing happens a majority of the time. I have to admit, I did reach down to use the keypad that wasn’t there on my desk when I wanted to highlight something. I had to laugh as it is like me trying to use my fob to open the front door to my house or trying to zoom in on an Instagram photo on my phone. My brain will adjust and catch up eventually!
In the world of technology, there are many companies producing different gadgets, such as Apple, Inc.’s iPads and iMacs, or Google/Samsung’s Nexus and Chromebooks. In the modern world, there are a lot of choices as to what kind of technology you use. Please answer to this post with your favorite tech company, and your favorite thing they make out of the following:
This year, we got iPads for every student in the school. Since this is new for everyone, I am wondering how everyone else feels. Personally, I think that at times it is easier not having to carry so much around and having the Internet at our fingertips, but at other times people can be irresponsible and bad with them. They are a tool with good uses and bad uses. We also have better software for computers, which is good, in my opinion. What is your opinion? Please comment to share it!
In class today we tried out the iPad styluses. We tried the Bamboo, the Amazon Basics, and the Cosmonaut. I liked the Bamboo the best because it felt more like a pencil. I didn’t like the Amazon Basics because the flap kept bugging my work. I liked the Cosmonaut because it was good for drawing but it was too big to write with. That is why I liked the Bamboo the best.
As you might know from my last post we were just working on a tech project. For the tech project we had to make a minute long movie, or some other presentation, about apps for the iPad ot other related technology. As I said in my last post, my partner on the project edited our video on iMovie, but forgot to save it, and then he left early from school because he was sick! Even worse was that the project was due that day and I didn’t know how to use iMovie!!! I was really worried about what I would do but with the help of my friend Ian, I was able to finish my tech project, learn how to use iMovie and the project turned out great! Now I know that whenever I need help or don’t get something, I can always get a friend to help me!
On the iPad there are many fun things to do. The thing I am going to talk about is an app called Skitch. Skitch is an app that is also on the laptops and the other Apple computers. I use Skitch for drawing, especially for my history comic that I am doing. The book that I’m reading is called The Ghost of Tokaido Inn. I am using Skitch and Comic Life, the program Finn is using for Finnotopia, to do my history comic. I also draw basketball strategy on it. That is how I use skitch.
In class a few days ago, we made Valentine’s Day Poems. It is where we take an article from a newspaper or book, then cut it out and choose random words to make a poem. What is cool about this particular kind of “poem”, is you don’t know what it will be like until you are completely finished with the whole thing. Here is what mine looks like:
Technology is very important to me. I think that it would amazing if our school could all have laptops or iPads. I know that the games and Youtube is a big problem though. People just need to know that breaking the rules is the wrong thing to do. They will get their laptop or iPad taken away if they are caught misusing it more than once. I feel as though laptops or iPads would really help our learning and help do work through the Internet. Sites like Quizlet, Typing Pal, Our DA Moodle Website, and others are very helpful to learn from. For example, last night I had to memorize 75 Spanish vocabulary words and on Quizlet I could test myself and learn them very fast. I think that having laptops or iPads would benefit our school’s learning in many ways.
My games are basketball games for people’s colors that are red, blue, yellow, and green. I also have a game in progress for a ship Scratch. I already have three demos for the game. My game will probably have about sixty levels so it will be a long and hard game for most people. I also like making color variations off of Nate’s game called Robotix.
My favorite thing about LA class is probably at the beginning of class when Mrs. Donnelly gives us 10-15 minutes of reading time. I really, really like reading. Grammar eh, vocabulary eh, but reading, that I can handle. It’s totally my favorite thing about LA. I mean seriously, reading is amazing. The power of books is awesome. The monks of medieval times decorated them with beautiful illustrations and jewels. I curse the days when we don’t get reading time. Reading can open so many doors that would otherwise be closed. Along with are current technological advancements, with Nooks, and Kindles, kids can read while feeling like they are integrating with the current technologies. This is good because kids love tech, and none more than I, so I know that if kids think that they are using tech they will jump at the first chance to grab it (especially if it is touch screen). These technologies can provide kids the satisfaction of using technology, while at the same time making teachers happy by seeing there students minds grow in all directions. Therefore I would fully promote a pilot for electronic reading devices where students could touch the latest tech and teachers the joy of watching the students minds grow full of knowledge.
Another idea would to be to have our library online so the students would not have to hold if a book was checked out because everyone would have access to it. And, you could also monitor the library, making sure that no one could take a book without checking it out. It would be an amazing opportunity for our school, to have a pilot for electronic reading devices. I would hope that people at our fine school would be responsible enough to handle such devices with the proper amount of care. This technology will help our school integrate technology into our curriculum and will allow us to take a step that few or no other school has taken in this direction of equipping our students with electronic reading devices and having a library online that is safe from people taking books without checking them out. We as a school could set an example for the city, or the county, or the state, or multiple states, or the whole country! With our fast developing world, it is important to stay up to date with the latest tech with reading as well as computers. Think about it, one school can impact an entire country in a sweeping phenomenon, that one school, could be your school, or my school, or any school at all. The students at my school would all support the chance to get there hands on some new tech to experiment and have fun. This could broaden our horizons and change the course of education for our country and in ten years help us stay on top of China.
I know that education is top priority to parents and teachers, but to students, all we want is a light backpack and not to many books to deal with. This pilot would allow students to have their books all in one place that is very thin and weighs as much as a magazine. Plus the fact that online books cost less than that of real books. For all you smart people concerned about the environment these books also require no paper in order for you to read them. This pilot could allow us to advance a step forward in the world of technology.
I hope that you all support my ideas and think them worthwhile. I appreciate all of you that have taken the time to read my ideas and comment on my proposition/blog post. I appreciate your feedback and will make edits accordingly. Thank you!