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.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

iPads at every turn!

In just the third week of the new year I find myself naturally using the iPads to extend and develop activities and to incorporate that rewindable learning element.  Today we used them in a variety of difficult ways to meet the needs of different individual learners:

Follow-up reading activity - after careful scaffolding at the teaching table, one reading group completed the activity independently including a sentence they needed to put back together and three high frequency words which they had to listen to and copy (project created using Explain Everything).

Learning to write their name - again a scaffolded small group session where learners used a blank Explain Everything page and a name card which I created for each learner this year.  We practised copying their name from the card onto the screen.  While we have been working on copying "under" my writing with their name, this was the first try copying their name from the card onto the iPad screen - some great first up efforts!

Ordering and identifying numbers to 10 - one of the things the majority of my learners need to work on is numbers to 10.  While they are able to count to 10, they can't read the numerals.  I've created a project for them to order the numbers, with dots under each number representing how many that number is (eg seven dots under the number 7).  Today we used this at the teaching table with great success.  This video highlights how a learner was able to order all the numbers by checking using the dots under each number.  He is confident in his counting to 10 and uses this skill to help him identify the numbers.  

NB:  For those new to my blog, I don't insist on no noise in my classroom when learners are 
recording and there will always be ambient classroom chatter or the voices of others on the 
examples I use - I'm used to just focusing on the voice of the learner in any one recording.

Finally, to complete the day we focused on our inquiry topic for the term - the Pt England Way!  We talked about listening in class and used our iPad to take a photo to demonstrate this key skill.  It was great to see the creativeness of the learners in demonstrating this point!


  1. Wow, awesome stuff and very inspiring. Can't wait to get my class flying with apps to support their learning too!

  2. Really great stuff Karen. Thrilled to see how your year has started.

  3. Thanks Kirsty & Innes! Its great to put the ideas and learning from 2014 into practice and I look forward to sharing some new innovations this year via my blog :)

  4. Wonderful use of Explain Everything - seems you can do about everything you want with that App! Great example Karen that I will share with others around NZ

    1. Thanks Stuart! Only limited by ideas and imagination - I'm forever innovating and trying new things with Explain Everything!