Saturday, March 22, 2014

Our Second Language Is Soaring in A 1:1 iPad Classroom

The spring always brings new learning, a little stress as you begin to realize the year is coming to end, not to mention testing season in Texas (lots of anxiety) but I am always on the quest for new experiences in student learning. As a bilingual instructor in 2nd grade, one of my many challenges is to assess how my student's second language is developing in a late transitional bilingual program. We have many apps that help my students develop their English. My two favorite apps are @writeaboutthis and @explaineverything. These two apps have helped my students develop fluency skills in reading and writing. In 2nd grade, we begin to transition into English speaking skills while continuing to support their native language throughout the year. I am always amazed when my students create projects using these two apps. They know these apps like the back of their hand and can easily navigate through them without any assistance from me. Students have used these apps all year long and I have seen great improvement in their speaking and reading abilities! I am a firm believer that digital learning can enhance and enrich the lives of students who are inspired to achieve success! Thank you to these two developers for their love of learning and their inspiration to continue their quest to achieve even more! I am honored to know Brad Wilson @dreambition who has made our dreams come true! My dream is to meet both these developers in person as they have inspired me and my students in many ways! Here are a few examples of how these apps have been successful in my classroom. The first video is our first live google hangout with developer Brad Wilson of @WriteAboutThis and why we love his app (he has a new app @TellAboutThis) and we love it and a few surprises up our sleeves!

Using ExplainEverything to read for fluency

  • Students took pictures of each of the pages from a printed book in RazKids or better known as A-Z Reading that I had provided for the students. We were learning about our solar system
  • Then they basically recorded their voice on each slide created in Explain Everything. 
  • The students listen to their recording as they play back their project in their Daily 5 stations throughout the week. This reinforces how fluency reading should sound when they hear themselves read

Reinforcing math vocabulary as students learn about 3D shapes using Explain Everything