Friday, December 31, 2010


Seems like everybody is either resolving to do things next year or reflecting on the year about to close.  I'll look back, and, if there is energy, will then resolve.

I've been using an iPad now for just over 6 months.  I have now read more e-books than paper ones.  swiping screens is not a problem.  With the sound turned off, I am uninterrupted by all the apps which send alert beeps and I have discovered I can turn all alerts off by simply switching the iPad to airplane mode.  When I'm ready to connect to the world again, I turn airplane mode off.  Checking email is no problem.  Hooking the iPad up to a TV so I can watch Netflix while on the treadmill is equally easy.  I can easily read news from a variety of sources, watch YouTube, and accomplish a variety of daily tasks which used to require sitting at a laptop.  Thanks to lots of ways to read/view items offline, I can catch up on reading while waiting for Noa's basketball practice to end.

Professionally, I use my iPad daily.  I have taken notes at meetings, posted information on students to databases, conducted parent conferences, etc.  Of course, when I need to create a document, process photos or create a movie,  I turn again to my trusty laptop.  Thanks to DropBox, I can view everything I need to conduct class.  I can even edit Excel spreadsheets, though that doesn't go quite as smoothly as I would like it to.  Using an iPad demystifies it for me and has helped me guide students who are also using iPads through the speed bumps they encounter.  While my school doesn't have an official policy which addresses student iPads, two students brought them regularly before the holidays and I suspect that number will rise once school begins again.  Using DropBox will allow students to use school computers to print documents that require printing.  I look forward to continuing to integrate the iPad into my teaching.

Last night I attended a friend's birthday party.  A guest brought Microsoft's new Kinect unit for us to play with.  Watching kids jump on plain carpet while virtually rafting down a fast moving river was very cool.  I almost considered becoming a gamer, but the moment passed!  In addition to the thrillseeking games, Kinect also has a virtual tiger cub.  The idea behind the tiger cub game is to "dig" for treasure.  All one does is paw at the floor and the tiger digs!  While the tiger cub was being set up, a three-year old boy commented, "this is soooo boring."  I shall remember these words as I find ways to incorporate physical activity into class!  I wonder if Microsoft's Kinect engineers can recreate the chariot race from Ben-Hur?  Happy New Year, everybody!

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1 comment:

  1. Your description certainly makes having/using aמ iPad sound not only impressive but also worthwhile. One question though - why would you want to be on a treadmill?