Teaching a New App

One of the things that I have learned when I have been asked by teachers to show students a new app is that usually only a minimal amount of teaching is needed.  What is more important is time to play and explore.  I usually go into a classroom and show the students how to begin the creation process in an app.  How to add one or two items and how to edit those items.  Then I ask them to create something for me.

When introducing Book Creator I show them how to create a new book, where the add button is, and where the editing tools are.  Then we all type in something on our cover.  After that I give them a task, usually a teacher has asked me to come in because they have a specific book idea in mind so we begin working on that book.  It doesn’t take them log to figure out how to do the things that they want to do.  The room us usually a buzz with, “Oh, cool, Ms. Hart I put a picture in.” or “Ms. Hart how do I change the colour again?” If I am working with the younger grades this is as much as I try to do in one lesson.  If I am working with the older grades, I think stop them and show them some of the more advanced tools, like adding audio, video, and weblinks.

For Explain Everything, I show them how to insert and image, use the drawing, laser pointer and the recording buttons.  I generally show them these by making a quick simple explain everything slide show while I show them the features.  Once they see it and see how quick and easy it is then I let them loose.  Again the room is filled with students saying “Oh, cool” then other students saying “What? Show me?” they are moving, working, or watching the whole time.  Having students be engaged in the activity is never an issue.

It is important to keep an eye on those students who don’t find technology as easy as others, that is usually where you will find me.  Walking them through how to use the app in a more one to one way. I also love to see the teachers in the room participating in the lesson like students.  My favourite thing to see is when they say “Oh, it does …” or “Hey, Suzy can you come show me that.”

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