Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Technology Resources for IB Schools


Another forum post from the group discussing technology in IB Schools

Question:
The Technology Resources for IB Schools section considers what resources schools need that technology supports, and what technologies the IB should provide for schools. What do schools at a minimum need, and what kinds of advice about resources should the IB provide? This includes hardware and software, as well as classroom design for technology-smart classrooms.

Answer:Using Google Apps for Education has transformed my teaching - I would never want to work in a school which doesn't have them! Google Drive, Google+ , Gmail etc - all incredible!We did create in house resource lists, but these are difficult, as technology is evolving so quickly. However having a 'basic apps' list which we share with new students is always useful - though this just includes our iTunesU course code, and a couple of recommended apps. We tend to put the ones that cost money here.
am still waiting on a Library management system, but have pooled together resources on a library iTunesU course, (all our courses are run through iTunesU). These includes lots of databases, archives, sources for copyright free images and music...etc. 
We also use RM Books for our e-books.

BrainPop - we use this in class and for homework - with the videos being used to flip the classroom, quizzes used in class, etc.

We use TED ED a lot for lessons, (great for cover lessons) and free

Britannica Schools and Britannica Image Quest are new to us, and we use them in all subjects - teachers love them! We get access to journal articles through EBSCO through Britannixa

We subscribe to The Day and use this in all subjects, Debate Club and in our morning notes. The Day came to our school to see how we use their resource and wrote a blog post on it here.

We are hoping to have a library management, Koha, soon to pool our resources together. iTunesU is great for subject courses, but it is not ideal for the library. If Koha doesn't suit out needs, we might sit Koha inside of a Google Site, and pool all of our resources together there.

When we first started we used to tell students which apps we wanted them to use for certain tasks, then we moved to giving them a list and now we give them the freedom to not only select the app, but the type of app - for example I might give them an evaluation task, some students might choose to write an essay, some might create an audio recording and others might make a video!

Although I love the iPad, the tools which have helped me the most are Google Apps for Education - which you can use on any device, as long as you have good internet. We could easily survive here if our equipment broke, but it would be really difficult without the internet. It's a great source for finding, sharing and creating information and allows us to easily collaborate on a huge range of tasks!