Teachers should embrace mobile learning because let’s face it, whether you like it or not, student’s are going to be using their cell phones. Phones are used by everybody. Children, parents, grandparents, teachers, the list could go on and on. The key to mobile learning is being able to filter the content that they students are being able to view. Whether you like it or not, students are going to be texting, on Facebook or Twitter instead of Google, looking up research question. So what should you do? It seems almost impossible to allow your students to use their phones and stay on task. We all know what it is like, slipping a few texts here and there in a situation where you should not be using your phone. Filtering the mobile use into educational use is what needs to happen. For example, Twitter is a great social media sight to find current and education information. One of the greatest things about Twitter is that it is real people talking about real life things, usually exactly when those events are happening. Allowing your students to use Twitter to do research is a great and useful idea. All in all, teachers should embrace mobile learning, because as I stated before, student’s are going to use their phones. It is our job as future teachers to filter what they are using them for into educational use.
Some of the main issues with mobile learning is keeping the students on track with what they need to be doing and also making sure that all of your students have access to a cell phone. I know, hard to believe right? A teenager not having a cellphone? Crazy right? Well in reality not every student will have a cell phone because not every family can afford cell phones. One way to bridge this gap is by having other students bring in their technology and putting the students in groups that allow them to share these technologies. Another way to bridge this gap would to show the student ways they can access technology such as a computer outside of the classroom. A local library or coffee shop. If that is not accessible, you as a teacher are always an option. Most, if not all teachers have a cell phone or access to one. Setting up a time for particular students who do not have access to mobile devices is one way to bridge the gap between families with cell phones and others without. This also allows you to talk with your student and form a better relationship with them, which is always a good thing.
The other issue is making sure that the student stays on task while on the cellphone. There are a few different ways that you could go here. Heavily monitoring the use of the cellphones and setting strict guidelines and rules would be one way to make sure that students are staying on task. With this strategy, students would be on task most of the time, but there would still be opportunities for them to get off task. Another method would be to set time limits on the mobile devices. I mean this in two different types of ways. The first way is only allowing them to use the mobile devices for a specific amount of time. This way, they do not have extra time to diddle daddle on the phone for too long. The other time management is giving them strict deadlines of when their internet or mobile based activities have to be done. By setting these due dates and strict deadlines, they are more likely to use their time wisely because they know that they are not going to get more mobile time to do so.
My desired age grade level is upper elementary level about grade 4 or grade 5. This is usually the age when students start to get cell phones, but not every student. This would be a great level to start putting students into groups so that they can share each others mobile devices. One application that they discussed in the article was BrainPop. This is an app in which it allows students to watch videos that are educational and then quizzes them on them. This app is highly supported by STEM and can help meet some common core standards. Since math is my favorite subject and fractions are strongly disliked by majority of math classes, I liked the app Motion Math. This app helped improve understanding of fractions of 120 students by 15%.
Since the students probably do not use Twitter or Facebook accounts, I think that the phone usage could be used to do researching. Such as using the apps mentioned above or Google to do research for a class activity.
Sooo.. Three different ways to use podcasting with fifth graders. The first way would be to have them upload their opinion on a particular topic. Instead of having to write out a paragraph and turn it in, they could record themselves talking out the paragraph. They could also listen to each others opinion on the topic and record their responses to them. It is important to allow them classroom time to do so, just incase somebody does not have access at home. Another way to incorporate podcasting is having high level readers or even yourself record yourself reading sections or chapters that need to be read by students. Then, allowing lower level reading students to listen to the recordings while the read along in the chapter. A third way to incorporate podcasting into your classroom would be to allow the students practice speeches. If they can record themselves and then listen to themselves giving the speech, they will be able to recognize problem areas of the speech and also allow them to see how long it is taking them to give the speech. This way, they can edit their speeches and fix their problem areas.