Tag Archives: mlearning

There’s an App for That

4 Dec

Things that I thought I would continue to do once I started teaching: blog.

Things that I don’t do know that I started teaching: blog… sleep…

I really wish I could get into the good practice of blogging more often, so today I have decided to talk about apps.  In university I thought I had found all the most wonderful apps that are amazing and useful.  Yesterday I deleted 100 apps.  Today, I took a moment to realize how many apps I have downloaded since school has begun, and how I found apps that fit to supplement what I was teaching.  As I teach a course that requires curriculum outcomes that relate to games, I have found apps that work in each of my units.  Let me take a quick second to recognize the apps that I adore.

Crossmath! – This $0.99 game has been used more than anything on my phone.  It works for teaching factoring, balancing equations, deductive reasoning… and also when you are really bored.

Hexominoes – This app works for shape and space as well as logic! It costs $0.99

Rush Hour – All of my students love rush hour.  I even have a physical copy of the board game. Working in groups really is helpful as they communicate hundreds of strategies. Cost is $2.99.

Flow Free – This game is great for shape and space as well as logic, it is also FREE!

Tangram XL Free – Works for shape and space units, deductive reasoning, and is Free!

Vault Breaker – Tests your logic and deductive reasoning skills to crack codes.  It’s free and fun.

Battleship – Used this for review for graphs, plotting points, ordered pairs, deductive reasoning and strategy.  You can play against a computer, over Wi-Fi with another device, or pass and play.  It is free.

CribbagePro – Need I say more? Oh right, it is free!

And lastly, I had this app downloaded forever and not once had I used it or even thought about it.  Then I taught Pre-Calculus and I understood why it is a must have.

Free Graphing Calculator

These are just a few of the math apps that I have been using in my classroom, and felt like I needed to share them now that I am actually using mobile learning.

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Why We Share

8 Mar

This semester I have realized how much sharing is important.  I have become very dependent on my peers for ideas and support throughout this semester especially, and the growth I have gone through because of this has been unlike any other in my university experience.

My presentation on QR codes has taken a vast majority of my interest the last couple of months.  It all started on my blog so I thought I would finish it here.  Except, I’m never going to finish it.  This project has become something I am so incredibly interested in, I want to keep going and become on expert.  I want to know what I’m doing, and look at all the pros and cons of its uses.  By researching just this one type of technology I can apply the process and many of the same skills used it to other technologies, and hopefully be able to learn as much about technology as I can.

My favourite part of this project has been my ability to share it.  Tomorrow is our presentation on what I have learned, and I have never been more excited to present something… ever.  I want to be able to show everyone the wonderful things I have found and hope to spark interest in them to do the same, and that is what teaching is all about.

My wiki, Education QR Codes,  has become my pride and joy.  I want to keep adding to it whenever I can.  I also want to try and use these things in the classroom and share what I do.  I want to share it all.  The most rewarding thing for me is knowing that I can share the information I have and have just one person be grateful for it.

What I would really love is if people all over would do the workshop we have planned for tomorrow.  It is a set of 7 QR “stations” that utilize QR codes and cell phones in different ways.  Some of them include posting your name and where you are from to a PollEverywhere survey, and uploading a picture to our class flickr.  It would be really cool to show my class how you could make that connection with people and have multiple people doing the same lesson.

Regardless of how the presentation goes, and especially the mark I receive, I have satisfied my hunger to learn more this semester than I have in a very long time… and that’s enough for me.

QR Codes

3 Mar

The more I have continued on with our technology project the more I love QR Codes.  Our focus has completely shifted to them, and there is so much that I’m learning I don’t even know what to present anymore.  On Tuesday we have to teach everyone what we have learned and the biggest thing I want to focus on is using our tool to teach the tool.  I want to make sure that all of what we are using is done on the cell phone and presented through QR Codes.

Another important thing for our presentation will be discussion of the pro’s and con’s of using cellphones and QR codes in the class.  We are so limited on time we are not going to get to have the in depth discussion that we really could have.

 

I have made a QR code for my personal information and played around with it trying new things out.  My love of Marilyn Monroe made me decide to put her in the background of my code.

Finally, I have put together a wiki, Education QR Codes, for all of the things I have been working on, and on it we are going to put up everything that we will be presenting on Tuesday!  I hope everyone is excited as me.

Mobile Education – Let’s Start Here

15 Feb

This is a QR code.  It so happens to be a QR code that links to the wiki our class has created, specifically the page about using cellphones and mobile devices in a classroom.

How can we use this?

This is a question I have been asking myself over the last couple weeks.  I have spent lots of time acquiring knowledge of mobile learning, reading blogs and thinking about how we could use it in the classroom.  I have thought of hundreds of ideas, but up until a couple days ago there wasn’t one that seemed good enough.  We have to present our technology to our class, but more importantly I wanted to find a way that I could actually use this technology when I am interning and eventually when I’m teaching.

What really got me thinking was QR codes, and it is where I decided to have my focus.  My first real question was are they just a commodity?  They have the same function as many other things do on their own, but they are just very easy to use.  Regardless of if they are a commodity or not, their convenience is something that is going to become more and more evident in advertising and social media aspects.

So how can we use it?

Today I pitched my idea to my group members, who will hopefully be commenting on this post, and we agreed that it is what we want to do.  We are going to make a QR scavenger hunt.  Maybe the word scavenger hunt isn’t the best word, we can think of it more like stations.  Something that we have to focus on is teaching the rest of our class the different tools cell phones use, so we are going to be able to do this in the form of this stationed work.  At each station there will be a QR code directing each person to a different aspect of cellphones, for instance a Poll Everywhere question, or a youtube video to watch, a discussion to post onto, upload a picture to a site, upload a video, make a podcast etc.  These stations will show the vast ability to be able to use a cell phone to do all those things.

Now let’s think in a classroom.  What this could enable is the use of all the different types of learners.  You can different stations that focus on the different types of learning which could all be connected to the same concept.  You could have students teach a concept and have them instantly upload the video to a place accessible to the entire class.

Ok.  Thinking too small here.  Let’s bring in the social aspect of this.  How big could you go…

What if you post your “scavenger hunt”, or stationed lesson, whatever you want to call it, on your blog, or website, or whatever you use.  You could then send it out to the world.  All a teacher, in any place, would have to do is print off a page of QR codes and the stations and lesson are ready to go.  Then, the teacher and the students can see the connections they can make with other students and schools all over the place.  The possibilities with this are endless.

Let’s think different subjects.  Math.  You could teach basically any  concept, come up with resources, and create these stations.  You can have students making real life connections with a concept related to their area and post them instantly.  You can have students teach a concept in their own way.  You could have students creating their own math problems and questions and post them ready to be answered by others. This is just a small portion of what you could do.

Let’s go art now.  Not only could you connect with the art you see in your community and share it, as well as share the art you have created, you could go crazy with collaboration.  If you had students sending in videos from all over the place in a response to what you or your students want, you could create film pieces, or photography pieces, even music pieces.  And all from your cell phone.

Science.  What if you had students create their own labs or questions to labs and have them post them for other students to complete.  You could have lots of people getting results to experiments or adding their input.  In English, or any language, you could do creative writing workshops, collaborative writing, pen pals and so much more.

Really the list could go on.  These are things that could completely be done without the QR code too, just by using them you are appealing to a different generation of learners.  Cell phones are very common, and smart phones are increasing as well.  These codes create a convenience to use these different technology aspects.  I know that even I have stopped relying on my laptop very much and almost do everything on my phone.

Since we are in a position that we are going on an internship in the next year, it would be extremely easy for us to collaborate on a project like this, granted we get the permission to use cell phones.  Something that we would have to work with, which we will already see just in our class, is that not everyone has a smart phone, or a phone capable of using QR codes.  There will have to be adjustments made to accommodate this.

This is just an outline of the idea’s that I have been having.  If anyone has any comments, suggestions, ideas, feedback… anything, it would be greatly appreciated.