Friday, February 5, 2010

iPods in Class Engage More Learners

Recently, I added two iPod touches to my classroom tech-tool box, and lately, I've been on a quest to discover how to best integrate these devices into my classroom. One idea that's proved to be a hit among my students is a job I call "iPod Support." This new classroom job is a great way to give students some academic "screen time" with the iPod touch, especially for those teachers who have a limited number of iPod touches like I do. You'll need:
• At least one iPod touch
• Wireless Internet connection
• Document camera 
• A willing student
• Math, Social Studies, or Science lesson
Before your next math, social studies, or science lesson, designate one student to be in charge of the iPod. Tell this student, 
"During the course of this lesson, listen for a keyword or phrase that you feel relates to the topic. Then, at any point during the lesson, "Google" a keyword or phrase. After the lesson, be prepared to share what you've found on the iPod using the document camera."
In Math this week, I taught how to multiply fractions, and the word "product" stood out in the mind of one of my iPod support persons. She explained that at first, when she "Googled" the word "product," she mostly found information about hair and skin careproducts, but about five or six links down the page, she found "a glossary of arithmetic and math terms," which included the definition for the word, product: the number resulting from two numbers being multiplied. This led to a brief word study about multiple meaning words, specifically, the two meanings for "product." Had we not used our new iPod touch in this manner, this teachable moment would have never occurred.

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