11 Jan

Mr Bright has an update for us on the latest developments of our exciting new 1:1 iPad project..

Over the last few weeks I have been delivering iPad sessions at Spring Brook Lower in order to gauge how the pupils respond to the device as a learning tool. The focus in every class was to design a basic app using some building-block code. We also used the iPads to engage learners in their Art lessons by bringing their colourings to life. Take a look to see how they responded to the tasks set..

This was also an opportunity for me to assess a range of things, including:

  • How long pupils can stay focused on a task
  • How engaged the pupils are
  • How resilient the pupils are when they can’t achieve a task immediately
  • Best methods of teaching different learners

The sessions went very well and every pupil responded positively. Most pupils were engaged for an entire 45 minutes and wanted more time to continue the task. The teaching assistants commented that the pupils were willing to listen to instructions for longer and stayed focused at their desks for longer than usual.

I also found that there was very little negative behaviour in class in all the lessons, the pupils were excited to learn and when they did try to get on a specific app (they couldn’t do as I’d locked them into the app I wanted them to use) they understood that the iPad was for learning. All the learners achieved what I’d set, to be able to use code to make objects move in an animation or game for an app. Take a look at these 6 clips to see them working..

Moving forward

The iPad initiative that is being rolled out across the Trust is so exciting and I can’t wait to work more closely with each school. However, we have to be mindful of a range of barriers we will face – here are just some of the things we will need to consider:

  • Differentiation in delivery of content; ultimately the iPad is a tool to help achieve curriculum outcomes but we have to be aware that some pupils have more experience of the device than others, so we have to be mindful that some learners need single-step instructions whilst others can move ahead.
  • We can clearly see that focus and attention are increased as a result of using such an exciting device but there can be drawbacks, as this can also be a solitary way of learning without much interaction. We need to ensure the iPads are used in a collaborative way, sharing work on screen and choosing apps or tasks that encourage discussion and collective learning.

Overall, what a fantastic opportunity we have to able to be at the cutting edge of learning. Every young person is going to benefit immensely from such an exciting project. Good times ahead!