Send Fast Information to Class iDevices

You’ve prepared your lesson well, details carefully thought out. While the iPad or iPod/Touches can be used as pickup-and-go device, having a workflow in mind gives a stronger experience.  Imagine my “oops” after handing out 25 iPod/Touches,  I forgot to set the website URL on the devices so my students could easily launch the site I wanted.   You’re thinking – easy – just write the crazy long URL on the board and have them type it in.   I can hear it now:  “It didn’t work… I can’t see…Is that an O or a number?…”. I can feel the tension rise.

No Problem! I had just downloaded the app, Chirp to all the devices. app_chirp This app uses sound waves (reaching above the pitch of classroom buzz) to send out information (links, images, notes) to all launched Chirp devices in the general vicinity.  (Recently it was used in London’s Topshop to send out backstage Fashion experiences to other chirpers.  I digress.)  So I launched my Chirp app, quickly typed in the URL and sent it out (my fingers were crossed).  I was absolutely amazed when I heard ping, ping, ping across the room as each device connected and automatically launched the website.  Two devices didn’t work so I cranked up the volume on my iPod/Touch and sent it again.  Success!  Right away, my brain went to how this little app would save me precious time so that I move ahead with curricular activities.

Have you used Chirp?  And what did you do with it? I’d love some real live examples of what happened.

iPad/iPod Apps ShootOut – Multisensory Blitz

District Pro-D arrived on February 22nd.  Offered at two sites (Byrne Creek and Taylor Park) complete with video feed of our keynote to Taylor Park, it served as a reminder that connection, collaboration, ideas generation happen when we all come together.  With over 110 sessions, it was an electrifying event. No small feat for a large school district!

The iPad ShootOut Panel of Dragana Mihic (Teacher-librarian at North), Dave Maclean (Principal at Westridge), Livia Chan and Janet Chow (District Learning Technologies) provided a series of fast-paced rounds of idevice apps framed around the following questions:


Please connect with any of our panel or our Learning Technologies team to further explore.

app_explaineverything  app_videolicisou  app_toontastic   app_abilipad app_clarospeak    app_Bookcreator app_storykit app_storywheel
app_photosynth  app_haikudeck  app_lifecards    app_docscan   app_meriamwebsterdic  app_epiccitadel   app_sidebyside app_3dbrain   

Choosing Meaningful Apps (iDevices)


Thousands of apps come and go in the iTunes Store.  Without concerted strategic effort, searching for that “just right app” may feel like a hunt for a needle in a haystack. Even when it is identified “educational”, what does that mean?  Upon closer inspection, many of these are nothing more than repetitive practice at Blooms ‘Knowledge‘ level.



What makes an app worthy of students’ time?  Consider this approach to evaluate apps:

  • the value an app can bring to a learner (and being able to articulate the value)
  • the connection from curricular content to the app (and being able to demonstrate the depth of that connection)
  • the possibilities the app can bring in order to amplify the learning
Using a rubric that considers Relevance, Thinking Skills, Sharing and Usability provide a roadmap for thoughtful choices.    Click here for a rubric to help in your decision making.