When we started implementing iPads a few years ago, the world was our oyster. Every app was new and every use of the iPad required some learning from our teachers and students. Now that all of our students have iPads in hand for two years, app learning isn't as important as it was. It's a neat spot to be in, because most of our students are familiar and comfortable with apps. They are even able to generalize settings, buttons, and functions between apps. They are becoming excellent at trouble shooting and helping each other too.
I've been focusing a lot with classes lately in extending the application of the technology. We've been smashing apps like ChatterKids, Popplet, and SeeSaw in order to create something really unique. Teachers are really experimenting using multiple apps to accomplish a task as opposed to being restricted by the functionality of one. Yesterday I worked with a first grade class who worked through many steps, which would have been tricky not too long ago, to create a talking image about earth day. To go from start to finish with the process took 30 minutes. They were only able to do it this quickly because of their base knowledge of apps; smashing them together was the new learning.
Opening the doors for new opportunities for our students to show their learning is a really big deal. Also, using apps in different combinations enhances creative thinking and offers endless possibilities in project based learning.
Instructional Technology Coach