5 days of school makes 1 weak.. I mean week. With a student count of ~240, names are going to be something to work on, is there an App for that?? Hmmm.. Face recognition with an uploaded student roster and photo db!!
I have an Aday/Bday schedule, so I only saw my students at most three times. On Friday, my Aday students finally got to touch, (yes, only touch - not turn on) their devices. I passed out 1:1 Pilot Device Addendums, and Laptop Rules/AUP forms to my students on the first day. By the 2nd day, I realized I'd goofed. I hadn't put MY name on the form, (homebase teachers were getting them, office staff, counseling, computer tech. teachers, ..). I also forgot.. how forgetful our students are.. I planned to USE the laptops Friday. Students were told, "without signed forms, you'll sit and watch longingly as other use their devices. Friday would have left almost half of my population in that sad position.
Good fortune shone on me because Friday turned out to be an excellent OVERVIEW day. The devices were in the middle of their table groups, (the signal that they will be used that day). After completing unfinished business, we reviewed the three signed forms (had they read the forms before signing? (answer: no)).
Then, each retrieved their assigned device, and by way of a powerpoint, we examined them, and their ports and dedicated keys. We talked about their handling and care and procedures (like a new pet); "45", (closing screens to give their attention to me), "90", (re-opening), closing the screens for off-task behavior, and "Ask 3 Before Me", (thanks peers in our Device Pilot group! - great advice.)
Not turning on the devices was the best way to deliver the lesson. By telling them upfront that we wouldn't turn on their devices, (collective "awwww"), we focused on laying the groundrules and learning about their devices instead "can we turn them on now? .. now? .. now?!"
It is really difficult not just putting the devices into my students' hands and beginning our first learning unit. I'm struggling juggling content with laying a strong classroom management foundation. I know from experience we've got to do that first, but my goodness, I'm itching to get INTO using the devices.
This weekend, I will put the finishing touches on my first unit lessons plans, (6 preps - whew!!) Following our Essential Standards and FL Pacing Guide, (thanks, Ms Baldwin/FL Peers), I've been investigating which technology will best lend itself to learning the required objectives. I'll create Symbaloos for links. I'll also review a new link offered by one of my Twitter peeps, www.edutoia.org/stw-project-based-learning-best-practices. ut, mostly, I'll enjoy Labor Day weekend; the time dedicated to honor the contributions all of us have made to the strength, prosperity and well-being of our great country. Go USA!