Friday, February 25, 2011

Smartphones and Laptops Up, iPads Down! (Presentations Blog)

In a class where I don’t think we had a bad presentation, the best I thought was 'The Personal ICT Devices in the Classroom' presentation.  Personally, I don’t have much experience with many of these devices (except the laptop) and this was a very informative and useful presentation that will help colour my opinion of these devices for quite a while.  I really liked the way the criteria was broken down (accessibility, authentic & engaging, features, production, research and community) because it covers all the bases that I would want to know about as a teacher before I picked one out for my class to use (if I was so lucky!).  
After having seen the presentation and digested its info, I am moved from my newly acquired belief that iPads were the future of classrooms.  Having seen the scores in this presentation, though not a wide variance, it is enough to convince me that Smartphones and Laptops are the future of classrooms.  The reason is not simply the scores, but as one of the articles linked in this presentation reveals, Smartphones and laptops are everywhere.  There is less need to worry about the financial burden of bringing these tools into the classroom when everyone already owns them.  I believe the word used in the article was ‘ubiquitous.’   I enjoyed my time with the iPad, but I was annoyed with its typing feature and often clicked on things by mistake when I was trying to scroll.  That along with this great presentation have given me a firm conviction for Smartphones and/or laptops in the classroom. Great job Shaun and Tim! 
Now to find a job in that classroom!


  1. Tablets are a fun tool and more useful towards educational purposes that smartphones I would argue, but I think that they are a bit tiring to use when surfing the internet or trying to type up documents. Unless an app has been made specifically designed for the navigation of a particular website surfing with an tablet can mean the text is too small or that you have to scroll left and right or up and down a lot. This isn't the end of the world, but it is annoying and at times a slow process. This doesn't mean that I wouldn't accept a free tablet if someone were to offer it to me, but in terms of a classroom I agree that laptops are still the way to go. The iPad does have the feature of buying a keyboard, but still this is lacking. They need to create a better way to use it with a keyboard input object before I feel it can be used to its full versatile potential. Tablets are close to reaching that point, but they are still missing that key ingredient I feel.

  2. I liked your point you made where you said "it covers all the bases that I would want to know about as a teacher before I picked one out for my class to use (if I was so lucky!)". Clearly the most important part of that sentence is "if I was so lucky!" It would be really fun getting to choose which cutting edge piece of technology you wanted your students to use in your classroom. I do think that in the classroom, laptops are the most effective. But not those little tiny ones - those are only half-decent even on the best of days. I think the thing that is the biggest hinderence with the smartphones or ipads is the inability to really type on them. I know for myself, I need a keyboard. BUT... I love how innovative some teachers are being with the ipad. For example, I heard of one teacher using "Angry birds" in his physics class. That's awesome. Also a nice punitive break really. But my verdict is that I think laptops are the best.