Thursday, May 15, 2014

Ms. Sokolosky Dreams of 1:1

Maddie Sokolosky, Algebra teacher and Math coach, shared the following:

In our quadratics unit in Algebra 1, learners are asked to take pictures of parabolas that they see outside of school. These pictures can come from inside their house or from around town, wherever they go! Once the learners have their pictures taken, we use the iPad app called Interactive Axes to lay a coordinate grid over the picture. Using the app Show Me, the learners are then able to create a short instructional video including all the key characteristics of their parabolas. The learners use these same pictures to find the equations of their parabolas. The iPads allow us to use Desmos, a digital graphing calculator, to draw conclusions about quadratic transformations. The learners are able to see any number of parabolas on the screen at one time, all in different colors, and be able to differentiate between the equation and the resulting graph. Throughout the inquiry-based lesson, learners take screen-shots on their iPad and record their findings using the Pic Collage App.

If we were a 1:1 iPad school, the learners would be able to take the pictures of the parabolas that they find around Coppell using their individual school iPad. There would be no transferring of pictures from cell phone to iPad or email to iPad. This would make the process of uploading the picture into Interactive Axes and saving it in Show Me so much easier! Every learner would have the required apps already downloaded on their individual iPad and would be able to do this process at home, not taking away from class time. In the second activity mentioned, the learners would be able to save pictures of their graphs made on their iPads from Desmos, directly in their Camera Roll on the iPad, which could be referenced at any time as part of the learner's notes. Class time would not be wasted erasing all the pictures and work from one class period to another and learners would be able to save all their work!  It would be very beneficial for every learner to have his/her own device that can be taken home at the end of each school day to use to complete in-class assignments or projects as well as to be used as a digital binder for organizational purposes! Imagine what it would be like if everything for all classes was stored in just one place and always available! Class time is not wasted sharing devices among learners, the device can travel between home and school, and finally, the child has the ability to keep a digital portfolio of everything he/she has learned throughout the year!

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