Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Launching A New Year Of Digital Devices,Tools & Learning!

In schools with digital devices, the first month of school is largely dedicated to getting everyone up and running with their devices and tools. Our district's first big influx of digital devices was delivered last school year in November, so this year was the first time I was supporting teachers and students who were ready to dive right in. I spent most of September and some of October helping our students get going. Reminding some and teaching others how to login and use Chromebooks, Google, Schoology, MyOn, SeeSaw, Typing.com and Newsela. It was such a whirlwind, I am probably forgetting a few! My calendar was packed, with a few teachers frustrated that there wasn't enough of me to go around!

Our 5th grade jumped into writing from the first week. With Mrs. Urban's class, I introduced writing and word processing basics right away with Google Docs. In addition to writing skills, we focused on spacing, word wrapping, centering. By jumping in right way, these students would be able to use these skills for their writing throughout the year.

Fourth Grade introduced students to Chromebooks using Schoology and MPCC (Minnesota Partnership for Collaborative Curriculum).  Mr. Hemann began with a map reading lesson. 



Third Grade students jumped right in with MyOn and Newsela!

In Kindergarten, we used the Draw A House app along with a beautiful book called Home by Carson Ellis. It is our "go to" lesson for teaching iPad basics, so typically our first iPad lesson.

I had a chance to share tips and guidelines:
1.  Always carry any device with two hands!
2. Swipe down on the screen (in the middle away from an actual app) to get a search option!  This way students aren't left trying to figure out which page their iPad app is on.  They can type in the first two letters to the search window to find their app!
3.  Five finger close.  Students can spread their hand out on the iPad glass and draw their fingers into the middle to close out of an app.  This is great for saving wear and tear on the home button on the iPad.  (It is also a great option if the home button is being a bit glitchy!)
4.  Never touch another student's iPad. If you want to help a fellow classmate, you need to point, not touch to help them find their way.
That was enough for our first day in kindergarten! Students read the book, learned about different homes, created their own home, and learned how to use their iPad successfully!  All in all a good day in kindergarten!

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This was a great beginning to our digital year! With a running leap, our OHE students were positioned to use their digital tools for even greater learning.