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Ideas from TIE

Well, now that I am rested up and my head has stopped spinning with all of the info. I took in yesterday at TIE, I am ready to share some goodies!  Jason Ohler was the keynote speaker…I have to say, definitely the highlight for me.  His presentation was on digital storytelling.  While I have dabbled in digital storytelling with my students, Jason has jumped in with both feet!  Jason is quite the storyteller himself and had us captivated as he reminded us of the importance of developing creativity in our students.  As Jason presented, I was madly jotting down notes and have some great quotes to share. “Literacy today is consuming and producing the media forms of today.  Students need to be able to write whatever they read (or consume).”    I love this, our students are not content with simply taking in literacy, they want to be creators and inventors of their own literacy.  This has expanded beyond simply writing… think about your students obsession with You Tube. This one is my favorite “Intelligence is measured by your desire to learn.”  I think this is my new life motto.  I need to plaster this all over my classroom.  No Child Left Behind does nothing for intelligence! “You don’t have to be a technician magician…know free labor when you see it and let the kids do it.”  In other words, you don’t have to know everything or anything about technology.  Your students know how to use technology, let them be the experts and teach each other (and you!) Jason has an amazing website dedicated to digital storytelling.  You may need to dedicate a chunk of time to this site, trust me you will end up spending time here (hooray summer break, you do have time after all!)  You can even check out some clips of Jason’s keynote speeches on You Tube, these are linked from his presentation page.   Also, be sure to spend some time on the Resources and Projects pages.  You will find lots of treats for the taking! Are you already digital storytelling?  What advice do you have for those who are thinking about taking the plunge? More tomorrow, I bought Jason’s book “Digital Storytelling in the Classroom” and it is calling my name!  Happy learning you intelligent readers you!

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The Answer Pad: BYOD Student Response System

Posted by admin | Posted in Apply, Classroom Management, collaboration, Evaluate, Interactive Whiteboard, iPod, Knowledge (remember), Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Subject, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), video, web tools, Websites | Posted on 16-04-2013

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What it is: The Answer Pad is a student response system…only better!  What makes it better?  The ability for use with BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) classrooms and the ability to collect student responses outside of your typical, limited multiple choice answers that most student response systems are limited to.  The Answer Pad is really made up of two parts.  1. The student response piece that lets students go interactive with outstanding drawing features.  2. The answer sheets that score and capture data from existing paper exams including full online reporting, the ability for students to show their work, and a variety of question types. The Answer Pad is available for the iPad, Android or from any web browser.  Download the TAPit Free app for the iPad!

The free version of The Answer Pad is pretty robust for teachers and students.  Premium features are available at a reasonable price that take it to the next level.

How to integrate The Answer Pad into the classroom: The Answer Pad is a really useful addition to the formative assessment puzzle.  I LOVE that it doesn’t limit teachers to gathering low-level data in the format of multiple choice answer (although this feature is available for those times when you want to check for entry level understanding).  The Answer Pad lets students draw and type out answers, making the feedback they give to you during a lesson that much more valuable.  The fact that it isn’t limited to the basics is GREAT!  Imagine a math lesson where students are able to actually show and demonstrate their understanding (not just their amazing guessing skills).  The instantaneous feedback is wonderful for adjusting lessons and providing more individualized instruction based on what you are seeing.

In addition to collecting more valuable math feedback, The Answer Pad also gives you valuable feedback for any subject, a blank template lets students free write/draw their understanding.  This might even be a great way for students to take notes during learning, you can give your students feedback on their note taking during a lesson.  I am always amazed when I look at student notes, some of our students really don’t know what is important enough to write down and how to organize themselves best for later reference.  Using the free draw in The Answer Pad would give you good insight into a student’s thinking process and help you to guide and direct them appropriately.

The reporting feature is also really helpful, being able to look not only at student answers, but also at the written work that led to the answer is SO valuable.  This embedded feature makes Answer Pad more than just a self-grading platform, this is feedback and data that you can really use to drive instruction.

Tips:  Premium features include: custom frameworks for scoring tests, ability to bundle assessments together for side-by-side comparison and reporting, advance functions for test scenarios, an additional drawing palette for the Go Interactive portion, support by phone, and access to black-line template library.

Thank you to @dkapuler for introducing me to The Answer Pad!

I’ve been nominated for a Bammy Award for Educational Blogger.  I’d appreciate your vote to help spread the word about iLearn Technology.  Vote here.  Thank you for your continued support!!

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using  The Answer Pad in your classroom.

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