Wednesday, January 8, 2014

News From The Andover Innovation Lab/Help Desk: IPad Cart Updates & Preparing Our Final Projects-Getting Back In the Flow

After a great Christmas break we are back at the Andover Innovation Lab and Help Desk ready to conclude the projects we have been working on in the first semester and also updating the IPad cart for the Science department. 

The Science Department at Andover High School has the amazing resource of a shared IPad cart which includes 24 IPad for classroom integration of technology and 1:1 learning opportunities. At a recent department meeting they collaborated and chose 18 new IPad applications to use in their courses. Amongst these was the app for Gizmo's which enables students engage in a variety of interactive science activities and the app for Prezi Presentations which will enable presentation creation from the IPad. The department did a great job selecting apps which fit their needs and classroom strategies. Apps like "Evolutionary Biology", "Ecosystem HD","Bridge Constructor”, and “Genetics Lab Mobile" will engage students with content rich learning on the IPad.

Organizing and adding these new applications to their shared IPad cart is the where the role of the help desk students come in. Viabhav Patel and I (Dan Downs) spent about an hour and a half with the cart adding the applications to the Science Departments ITunes account and then synching all the applications to the IPad. This is also an opportunity to check the status of the charging of the IPad and the MacBook laptop which is used to streamline this process.

It is great to have students as part of this process and enables them to not only see the connection of their learning at the help desk to the needs of the teachers in the classroom. 

After completing the update Viabhav also had time to do a blog entry for the Innovation Labs blog on the video series related to better helping teachers understand Minecraft for use in educational environments. Viabhav has done a great job balancing his time between working on his own independent project and assisting the needs of teachers who have the benefits of a variety of new technologies in the classroom.

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