My First Post!
There is an incredibly steep learning curve from opening the iPad boxes to feeling that I have a grip on how best to use them to maximise learning opportunities. While much is made of the SAMR model of Substitution to Augmentation to Modification to Redefinition of tasks, a process has to take place during which I, as the teacher, am learning both about apps and their functions and shortcuts, quick-fixes and solutions when things don't go as expected. The Tech support team are great but they are learning about iPads at pretty much the same rate that I am, so often I have to find my own solutions. Furthermore, solutions need to be found immediately in a lesson, and the tech team aren't available on a call-up basis. Therefore, hand on heart, I can't say that in every lesson we are making perfect progress in learning. Each time we use them the amount of learning increases and the training on the tech aspect moves forward. But there isn't a short-cut to this process, and I've just had to accept that it's a necessary investment of time in future success, and if the MFL learning has taken a dip from time to time, then so be it. The end results are worth it!
One delightful consequence of needing instant solutions to unforeseen problems is that the pupils themselves are usually the ones to find a solution - there's always someone in the classroom who's better than me in fixing a problem and they get to wear the green unicorn Tech Expert hat - just a silly little conical party hat I made six of, which for some reason the children love to wear. Having digital leaders is fantastic, and saves tons of time in a 30 or 40 minute lesson. The first person to complete a task immediately takes on a 'teacher' role and helps guide less confident pupils.
So...the purpose of this blog is simply to share my experiences of using iPads in Primary MFL, specifically Year 4 to 6, with explanations of actual projects I've done, because that would have been a big help to me when I began and it cuts out a lot of the time-consuming exploration and investigation that I needed to do before presenting a project to my pupils. I hope it helps someone somewhere...!