Sunday, December 21, 2008

Twittering Away

Last week we launched a lightening speed attack on two French classes (grades 8 and 10) armed with a couple of dozen iPod Touches. The kids, needless to say, were over the moon with excitement.

We spent the first session having them create Twitter accounts and then using TweetDeck so that all the messages were displayed on the big screen at the front of the class. The teacher soon had conversations going in French asking the kids questions and talking about their answers as they displayed. The students were working in pairs and it wasn’t long before I noticed one student using her French/English dictionary while her partner keyed in the answers. The ability for students to respond simultaneously kept them focused and working hard.

How else will we use them? This morning, as I waded through some of the 385 feeds stacked up in my reader, a blog post by Wes Fryer mentioned Tony Vincent’s blog. Learning in Hand is “an educator’s resource for using some of the coolest technologies with students.” Tony has been doing a ‘twelve days of iPod Touch’ series and has got me thinking about more ways to incorporate the uses of iPods in class. I’ll spend some time today reading his posts and looking at his delicious bookmarks for iPods.

Some of the possibilities include:
- having the kids Tweet questions from home and get help from fellow classmates or their teacher
- create flashcards (there’s a way to view PowerPoint slides that I need to find out more about)
- involve students who are away sick by having them Tweet
- create and access podcasts

How would you make best use of these devices in your classroom?

Photo used under Creative Commons by .....dotted.....

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