2011-2012 Ralph McCall 1:1 iPad Findings


This project had students using engaging technology that allows them to access curriculum and work with a medium with which they are familiar [with] and is transparent.  The technology is ubiquitous and at any given moment they could showcase their work for all the students to see. The technology became a way of differentiating and disseminating information back and forth between teacher and student.

In essence, the technology that was requested combined iPads with the Apple TV™ and created a wireless mirroring display similar to the SMART™ Boards that are used in some classrooms within RVS.



Research Findings:


The most rewarding result of the iPads was that they became just another tool for the students. They were handed out at the beginning of the day and stayed with the student until the end of the day.  Each student was given license to organize and customize their own device to fit their personality and learning style.  After the initial excitement of getting the devices (this excitement lasted about two weeks), the students began to utilize the iPads just as they would a pencil or notebook.  If they needed to look up a word, use a calculator, read a book, shoot a video, take a picture, conduct research on the Internet or any manner of tasks, their iPad was on their desk for them to use.  Imagine an information commons residing on the desk of each and every student.


The iPad as a ‘convergence device’ is truly powerful.  It combines many devices so that the students don’t have to worry about moving content or media from one device to another.  They can take a picture or video, manipulate the media they captured, publish the results to their teacher, all on one device.  The fact that the iPad allows them to do all of these things so easily speaks to its power to enhance student’s ability to create content (and not merely play games).  It is also wonderful that the iPad’s charge lasted all day and that the students did not have to search for a power outlet in the middle of the day.


The iPad’s made the collection and dissemination of information easy for both the students and teacher.  Using an assortment of cloud services (we utilized four different ones), I was able to send students different content (messages, pdf’s, links, etc.) from my teacher iPad and computer and the students were able to send their work to me.  This was all done wirelessly, which helped create a more productive workflow than if the students had to plug in their iPads to sync.  The flow of information was seamless from student to teacher and vice versa.


Note: Please keep in mind that at any given moment, the students could showcase any work they were doing on the whiteboard, similar to SMART™ Boards.  With all of the findings below, the students were extensively involved with that process.  The source criteria listed below are mere examples of how they used iPads and how they were displayed.  Also, please note that all the material(s) collected have been saved in a “cloud” service called DropBox™.  This allows for all the information I have collected to be in one central, localized site.



With respect to Products;

  1. I.         Please see the link below for some different examples of what work the students created using Keynote, an application on the iPad that is similar to PowerPoint.
    1. https://www.dropbox.com/s/detm0ef1amy451v/Presentation.pdf
    2. https://www.dropbox.com/s/zwtzed0g5o2xg4b/Presentation.pdf
    3. https://www.dropbox.com/s/nqbn5wfdmrm4qek/Presentation.pdf
    4. https://www.dropbox.com/s/r5rw0dneswhktai/Presentation.pdf
  2. II.         This next work had the students writing a scatological story focusing on the sequencing of group created sentences and using time /sequence words.  They were asked to produce a written copy and then transfer their work onto Pages, a program on the iPad similar to Word.  Please see the following links for different examples.
    1. https://www.dropbox.com/s/vtlvu65nsb7zhmw/Amity.pdf
    2. https://www.dropbox.com/s/jorlv7yioqcssow/Chelsea.pdf
    3. https://www.dropbox.com/s/u5bwtw59irkqfq6/Madison.pdf
    4. https://www.dropbox.com/s/3ucw8zvj15jsud2/Hunter.pdf
  3. III.         The next works are videos recorded on the iPad by different students.  They had the responsibility of creating a presentation on one of four topics. (see highlighted)

The links directly after are short videos of the students being recorded by another student in the classroom. The functionality and ease of recording videos is very evident with all students.

Refer to the link for the outline and outcome of what was expected of the students.  You will also notice other documents that the students had to “sync” to their iPad, including the Grade 3, Math Makes Sense textbook (referred later on)


Video Recordings:

  1. https://www.dropbox.com/s/as7uqk8j74j9jll/Video%202012-05-29%202%2053%2014%20PM.mov (Ethan)
  2. https://www.dropbox.com/s/tjk5aawsfew73c9/Video%202012-05-29%202%2026%2027%20PM.mov (Brielle)
  3. https://www.dropbox.com/s/kn5krz80yfwkpp6/Video%202012-05-30%204%2031%2039%20PM.mov (Alex)
  4. IV.         Students have been “blogging” their opinions in class (and on the spot) on certain ‘special’ events that have happened in the last few months. See the hyperlink below that is directly linked to the Ralph McCall School plone site and see what was on their minds at that time.
  5. V.         Students have also had access to an iPad copy of the Grade 3 Math Makes Sense textbook, as only one hard copy was available at the time.  Through the application GoodReader a pdf version of the textbook was made available.  The students were able to sync from a local file and then onto their own iPad, furthering the need to eliminate a class set of textbooks.



With respect to Observations;

  1. I.         As a classroom teacher, my observations have found that the students have been completely engaged mostly because this technology is new.  The iPads have made a profound difference in my class.  The iPads have been much more than a “tool” to search for information.  They have been much more than that.  At first, I thought that integrating the iPads into our daily life in the classroom was going to be taxing on my own teaching.  What I have found is that the students have easily manipulated the iPads for their own use and it has become more of a tool and their true potential becomes evident – personal devices.  The following link(s) showcase how they have become less of a tool and more of a personal device.
    1. https://www.dropbox.com/s/4szocest7ukg47n/Video%202012-06-12%2011%2027%2054%20AM.mov (all class)
    2. https://www.dropbox.com/s/p0q2qd2jc7pl14n/Video%202012-05-08%2010%2011%2059%20AM.mov
    3. https://www.dropbox.com/s/7w8i7rohjsq1qnm/Video%202012-05-03%202%2036%2021%20PM.mov


From what you can see the iPads have become more than just a tool.  It has been a personal device that has merged into and become a transparent part of their daily work.  I have seen the changes that have developed with some of my reluctant learners and how they thrive in an environment where they have a personal, hand-held device.  The children that flourish are also at an advantage.  They have become a well-defined 21st Century Learner thus adopting a role as class leader and in some cases, a protector.



With respect to Conversations:

  1. I.         The following students, Alex, Jake, Chelsea and Hali were asked their opinions on HOW HAVE THE IPADS HELPED OR CHANGED THEIR LEARNING?  The following videos are what they had to say and what their overall thoughts were:




Recommendations for others

  1. Talk to colleagues who have engaged in these kinds of projects, as the setup needs to be done properly or else you will become frustrated.
  2. Consider thinking about ‘syncing’ files as opposed to ‘saving’ files as these are two different processes and work quite differently.
  3. Utilize the restrictions that are baked into the iPad’s to help guide the students.
  4. Consider letting the students personalize the iPads to increase engagement and buy-in.
  5. Spend some time thinking about how to get information on and off of the iPads and how to share information between yourself and the students.  Talk to others who have already done this, as it can be quite tricky.
  6. Make sure that you set aside some money for apps and save some for apps that might come up later.
  7. Consider getting the students styluses so that they may print and write legibly.
  8. Let the student explore the iPads themselves.  Often they will come up with ideas that you have not even considered.




Submitted respectfully by Trevor Hanlan

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