iPad – How to Make It Read the Text To You

iPad – How to Make It Read the Text To You

This is a wonderful post from iGameMom on how to use one of the assistive technology features on the iPhone/iPad.  I used it last night with my daughter while she read one of her Fancy Nancy books on my iPad so it would pronounce the words that gave her trouble, and so that she could hear certain sentences read fluently for her.  You can buy books that will read aloud to your child but if they are like my daughter, they would rather try it for themselves first.   Great for reluctant or struggling readers and FREE with your device!

Happy Teaching!

The Road to 1:1 – Rules for the Homefront

There is a ton of research out there about the 1:1 initiative, in which students are issued devices by their school district in order to enhance learning.  Our district began hinting at this change several years ago and as I began to take a look at all the research, I have to admit to being extremely overwhelmed.  If it’s a ginormous (what a fun-sounding word!) idea for me as a veteran educator, I can only imagine what it will do to the minds of our parents.  So I have decided to chronicle our adventure and share the ups, downs, and realities of this experience here.  Look for periodic posts on this topic in the coming months.

 

My hubby and I have discussed the idea of our 4th and 5th graders bringing home devices, and frankly, we have quite a few concerns.  I can’t get them to put their shoes in their room or remember where they put their library books (this marks the 3rd year we have paid lost book fees!).  A device?  Pretty scary stuff.  This made me think about a few ground rules that we need to put in place at home, so I thought I’d share them here – use what you can and toss the rest!

 

Rule #1 – Device stays in a designated place.

Our house has been known to occasionally ingest items with no warning – socks, DVDs, library books…so having a place set aside for certain items has been essential in the survival of our stuff.  I have a small case with shelves near the rear entrance of our home for stray shoes and papers that need to be signed and returned to school.  This will probably be the resting place for any device and all of the pieces parts that go with them.  That way, we save time looking for things in the morning and always know where they are.

Rule #2 – Device stays away from little sister.

I love my tiny human (a.k.a. Buddy), but she can do an incredible amount of damage in a short amount of time.  So she will not be allowed to touch the devices her sissies bring home.  Ever.  Not even when she pushes out that bottom lip and fills those big, brown eyes full of tears – we all have to stay strong.

Rule #3 – Device does not travel with us.

We are constantly on the go – like, our home is more of a rest stop on most days than anything else.  Whether it’s a quick trip to the store or a trek to church service somewhere, I’m going to insist that they leave their school-issued devices home.  (Sometimes the car gets a little hungry for our stuff too!)

Rule #4 – Device stays away from the dinner table.

I’ve seen it happen and done it myself – the classic E.W.T. (Eating While Typing).  It makes for sticky, nasty keys and screens that spread germs and bacteria from person to person…definitely keeping these away from food or drink of any kind.

I’m sure we’ll think of many more as we roll along, but these are the Big 4.  Are your kids brining devices home from school this year?  What rules have you put in place on the homefront?

iPad for Beginners

I received an email from a fellow tech specialist today that he shared with his staff.  In it, he explains some of the common jargon associated with an iPad.  It occured to me then that although they’ve been around for years, not everyone is familiar with the world of the iPad.

The one to one computing revolution has descended upon us at warp speeds.  If you are in a school that will be adopting iPads to pilot in your classrooms in the near future, I will be sharing some resources for you to have on hand that I hope you will find useful and interesting. 

A great place to start is this post from the blog everythingiCafe entitled Getting Started: An iPad Guide for Beginners – http://tinyurl.com/c5j2pqt

BTW, for all you grammar scholars out there, what is the correct way to annotate blogs and posts?  I’m new to the blogging scene and have a lot to learn!  Post your reply below.

Happy Teaching!