Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a teacher and leader of digital learning, working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 2 class using iPads to engage and motivate learners and improve student achievement. This blog documents my teaching journey and my learning processes with iPads in the classroom. I've proud of having been a member of the inaugural Manaiakalani Digital Teaching Academy(MDTA) program and last year a Spark Manaiakalani Innovative Teacher (MIT) and Manaiakalani Google Class OnAir teacher.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Exploring the school .... with iPads

I have more confidence this year with the iPads than I think I had last year.   I'm sure this is because I made many mistakes (learning opportunities) last year and really understand the importance of routines and expectations this year.

On Friday we had our first outdoors photo session, after several inside, and I was totally impressed at the care and attention that the learners paid to both their iPads and the task at hand.  Having the safety video to use as a reference point (and the terminology - hug hold) really helped and I didn't have to remind anyone of how to care for their device during the 45 minute session.

Rather than sticking to "colours" for the learners to find and photograph, I gave them more scope to explore and think about something unusual they could use by including:

  • A tree (very specific to start with)
  • Something blue (again, pretty specific but with a little more scope for creativity)
  • Something that is moving 
  • Something that makes a noise
I was really impressed with the differences in photos that were produced and these gave us talking points for back at the classroom.  For example, photos taken of the cows in the adjoining paddock gave me an opportunity to focus on how to take a photo through the fence without seeing the fence in the photo.  Photos with fingers or other people on the side, gave me an opportunity to discuss how we can avoid this and ensure that what we want to see is in our photo.  This will all help in class when we use photographs to document, create and share our learning.

Photo by Whare (Something moving)

Photo by Hendrix (Something Blue)

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