Sunday, May 20, 2012

iPad Helps Students Learn about Loggerhead Turtles

The fourth graders at Sandy Hill are studying Loggerhead Turtles during science class. We will be tracking their migration patterns and nesting habits.

To obtain some background knowledge on these creatures we set up 4 stations to go through to complete an information scavenger hunt!

At station 1 students highlighted information found in their science journals. Each color represented a different idea about Loggerheads.

At station 2 students read a non-fiction book about Loggerhead turtles with their group.

Station 3 consisted of students gathering around the teacher's computer to check out a National Geographic website page on the turtles.

Finally, at station 4, the students hovered around an iPad and watched a 7 minute clip from Discovery Education about the nesting habits of Loggerheads.

The class was so excited when they found out they were being trusted to use the iPad! Even just the freedom to pause the video or rewind to take notes was thrilling to them! They handled it incredibly well and were engaged the entire time! What a fun science lesson was had by all!

Kendra King
Sandy Hill Elementary

Monday, May 14, 2012

iPads Make an Impact in 5th Grade Math

My fifth grade math group has been using iPads to practice math facts. We specifically use Math Monsters and Math Balloons to practice multiplication facts. The kids are motivated and eager to practice their math facts using the iPads. After 8 minutes of practice we do a one minute test and graph our facts correct. We have seen a good bump in our progress from practicing with the iPads. Our next assignment will be for the students to learn how to make a 'Show Me'. They will use this app to record their mathematical thinking while solving a problem.

Thank you Jenison community members for making this motivating technology a reality in our school!

Rané Garcia, Principal and 5th grade Math Teacher, Bursley Elementary

Prezi Viewer is Engaging

One of my favorite apps is Prezi Viewer. You can create your own prezi to use, or search the many that are available on their website. I found another early elementary teacher that created Prezi's for all of the short vowel word families. I can save a copy to my Prezi account and use them for free! You can search their library and maybe find some that would fit your curriculum. Once a Prezi is added to your account from your computer, you can use Prezi Viewer to share it with your class via your projector. Staff members could even work together (grade level team or department) to create and share Prezi's for various lessons or content areas. It is so engaging and really keeps kids attention!

Amy Hage
1st Grade Teacher

Great iPad Resources for Education

This post is about resources. Check out the links below.  Thank you to Rich VanderKlok for sharing.

Follow this link for 8 Great Free Web Resources Focused on Using the iPad in Education
Follow this link for 15 Favorite iPad Apps As Selected By Teachers
Follow this link for Five Fun Free iPad Apps for Elementary School Teachers And Students
Follow this link for Using The iPad As A Digital Whiteboard (+4 Cool Free Apps To Try It Out)
Follow this link for 8 Great TED Talks About The Future Of Education And Teaching
Follow this link for Apple TV In The Classroom – The New Smart Board
Follow this link for EmergingEdTech’s 2012 Free Education Technology Resources eBook

Friday, May 4, 2012

Songify and iPad Make Beautiful Music Together

The first week of having an iPad in music is going really well!  5th graders used the app "Songify" to create a song about the five basic elements of music, rhythm, melody, harmony, expression, and form.  They were entranced by how quickly we produced our chart topper!

In third grade, we worked on identifying notes in the treble clef easily.  Students were able to move a note to any place on the treble clef. Then they identified the line or space on which it landed. When practice is fun, it seems students are able to better retain and recall basic information.

Using our music iPad, we'll create, play, and sing in new ways.

Thank you Jenison community for enhancing and enriching our schools!

Grant Carmichael
Elementary Music Teacher

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Bursley Elementary Sum Fun Math Uses iPads

Bursley Elementary started using iPads with their after school "Sum Fun Math" group this week.  It was so much fun to use the iPads to practice math skills and see the students so motivated and engaged.  

We have been doing this after school group since the beginning of March and I have never seen these struggling students so motivated to do math.  

Not only that, but they were sharing iPads, which required teamwork and helping each other.  One student even commented, "Look, we have to work together.  Just like when we work as a team in writing."  

Also heard today, "This is way cooler than my mom's Nook."  

The best part is the speed at which these students recalled their facts. We saw dramatic improvement in recall facts within 10 minutes. 

Thanks, Jenison Community, for helping us to get technology into the hands of our students.

Keriann Poquette
Bursley Elementary School

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

First iPad Training a Success

Forty-eight teachers from Jenison Public Schools were the first to receive staff issued iPads.  These individuals attended a volunteer two-hour distribution and training on Monday, April 30.  Staff members are receiving these devices as part of a successful bond in February of 2011.  After significant research and planning, the district chose to provide staff members with iPads to enhance teaching and learning.

JPS staff members during iPad training

JPS Director of Information Technology Dave Tchozewski was assisted by Technology Assistants Barb Kadzban and Laurie Edgcombe, Technology & AV Support staff Melody VanStrien, and Technology Integration Specialist John Otto in providing a successful training.

Dave Tchozewski, Director of Technology, leads iPad training for staff

Staff members worked to complete an initial setup of the iPad and configure their email and calendars settings.  They were also exposed to a number of Tips & Tricks for becoming better and more efficient users of the iPad.  Finally, a number of suggested apps were demonstrated and discussed on how they could impact student learning.

Resources for the iPad rollout can be found at