25 ways to use an iPad in an Early Elementary Classroom
25 Ways to Use an iPad in an Early Elementary ClassroomLindy McDaniel -Early Childhood Special Education http://considerateclassroom.blogspot.com/ firstname.lastname@example.org
#1-To Teach Skills• The iPad can be used to teach skills in a one on one, small group or whole group setting.• We are seeing amazing results regarding cognitive, social and communication progress.• For example, by using the apps featured on the next slide 5 out of 6 of our morning students have began singing along to the alphabet song and all six of our afternoon students have increased the number of uppercase letters they can label and identify. (Both are skills the students did not have prior to using alphabet apps as part of opening circle time in January of this year.)
Example of Learning Letters Video clip goes here. ABC Song and Starfall ABC are the apps used in this video.
• The iPad has apps to teach almost every early learning skill.• See the chart below to view some of our favorites. (Refer to your app list for support.) Matching and Sorting Color and Shape Recognition Letter Recognition
#2-To Motivate Video clip goes here.(Video clip of where the student started prior to iPad motivation and learning in seat behavior.)
Example of iPad used as Motivation Video clip goes here. Toca Boca Christmas Hair Salon is the App Used in this video
Key Points About this Video• The iPad reinforced good behavior immediately following each teacher directed work task.• A PODD was used to increase spontaneous language. “I want iPad” was the first phrase this student put together on her own by flipping through the PODD communication book.• This video clip was taken in December, now this student is only getting time with the iPad after every third worktask, she works through 9 tasks each session successfully and productively.
• Other students have a Velcro strip with six or seven tokens on it to represent the number of tasks they need to complete successfully before getting iPad time, yet other students need more motivation and still earn iPad time after each worktask to maximize success and productively.
#3-To Reinforce Skills Video clip goes here.ABC Tracer and Little Speller are the apps used in this video.
Key Points About this Video• Brief moments of iPad time were used to reinforce specific skills.• By using the iPad in this way, at direct instruction, I have time to collect data on what the child just did as they get reinforcement via the iPad.TIP- Some iPad apps have their own datacollection piece mixed in, such as Word Slapps.
#4- To Create Generalization• Often our students get stuck on specific skills or tasks as they are the ones they are most comfortable and successful with.• The iPad can be used to generalize worktask skills, build confidence and support concrete learning.
TIP- Put your iPad apps into folders that relate tospecific subjects such as math, writing, and literacy.Add letters or numbers to reference to the folderswhen creating your direct instruction schedules.
Then place notecards in your taskboxes andworktasks so you can list apps that are similar tothe task for staff to quickly access.
#5-To Support Communication Video clip goes here. My Choice Board is the app used in this video.
Key Points About this Video• This clip is from a one on one session with a new student. From a previous session, I knew he did not like to touch things. He resisted his object schedule items as well as PECS icons and pointing to items in a PODD communication book.• I just took a shot with the iPad using a choice board that had verbal output, hoping it would have an impact. In the video, you can tell his choice was purely accidental.
Example of SupportingCommunication with the iPad Video clip goes here.
#6-To Improve Morning Calendar and Circle Time• Create a powerpoint for your morning calendar (Days of the Week, Weather, Attendance, etc)• Save it as a pdf and open it in Power Presenter• Plug into your projector and you have an electronic circle time similar to what a Smartboard can offer but less expensive.
Example of Morning Calendar (Pay close attention to the little boy in light gray.) Video clip goes here.Power Presenter is the app used in this video.
Key Points about the Video• Each child was working at their own level.• Some were working on letter identification, and color matching.• While others were working on training their eye to watch the screen and be in tune with what is going on around them.TIP- An extended pointer was used to drawattention to the screen as well as motivatingpictures of animals and vehicles on each slide. Ahand icon and job chart were also used to supportthe children when it was their turn. (see next slide)
Color Recognition Training to Look Individual Task Individual Task 1 Letter Recognition Individual Task Training to Look Individual Task 2 Pointer with extend dowel to draw students’ attention to Training to Look specific items Individual Task 3Job Chart and iPad Shelf
#7-To Encourage Whole Group Participation• The iPad can be a bridge to help children join group that are not normally interested in being a part of the group.• It helps motivate and engage them during whole group learning activities.
Key Points About the Next Video• The next video clip is of the little boy in the light gray shirt in the previous video. Initially he did not participate in large group instruction unless physically prompted with hand over hand support. He left or attempted to leave the group setting as many as 5 times each session.• This clip is about a month after the previous one. The student has been using the app in this clip during one on one instruction for a few weeks.• The app in this clip is programmable to support confidence and success. During one on one instruction the student has to chose between 2 and 3 colors during large group he simply has to pay attention and touch the 1 color presented.
Example of Creating the Bridge Video clip goes here. Word Slapps is the app used in this video.
#8-To Complete Step by Step Directions Video clip goes here.Cookie Doodle is the app used in this video.
Key Points about this Video• By using the Cookie Doodle App for this step by step cooking activity, the students had a visual of how many ingredients needed to be added. This decreased anxiety in the group setting and helped the students wait successfully.TIP- Recently we have added a token name system forone student to see when it will be her turn to help withwhole group iPad activities. This has helped her attendto the activity at hand rather than being so excited forher turn that she couldn’t listen and watchappropriately.
#9-To Enhance Thematic Units, Activities and Lesson Plans Video clip goes here.Animal Dentist is the app used in this video.
Key Points About this Video• This activity was created quickly to fill time while waiting for a guest speaker.• It was highly engaging as all the students attended for the duration of the activity but also purposeful as it related to our dental health unit and practiced skills related to name recognition, fine motor skills, number recognition, counting and number concepts of more and less.
#10- To Support Literacy and Reading• The iPad can be a medium for reading interactive books one on one, or in a small or large group setting. Interactive Touch Book, Bunnyfur’s Easter Eggs is the app featured in this picture.
TIP- For students that have a difficult timeattending during large and small groupdownload books youhave a paper copy ofand let them followalong. Dr. Seuss’s ABC is the app featured in this picture.
#11- To Create One on One Time During Direct Instruction Video clip goes here.Letter Quiz is the app used in this video.
Key Points About this Video• When supporting more than one student at direct instruction at a time, I was struggling to support students’ individual needs. This system provides students with one on one teacher time as well as motivating iPad time.• It has helped students who tend to be on their own agenda with no need to increase their pace.• It has also supported progress regarding individual goals and needs as I have found 5-8 minutes of one on one teacher directed time is more purposeful than 10-15 minutes of small group teacher time.
#12-To Support Students in Calming Video clip goes here. (Video clip of student’s behavior earlier in the day.
Example of a Student Calming with an iPad App Video clip goes here. Move Me is the app used in this video clip.
Key Points About this Video• This video clip was the second time the child used the calming app.• Since that time we have used the app as a proactive measure. The child uses the app when he gets to school and then two other scheduled times within his day.
#13- To Build Imitation Skills Video clip goes here.(Video clip of student participating in a song without the iPad.)
Example of a Student Imitating with an iPad App Video clip goes here. If You’re Happy and You Know It is the App used in this video.
#14- To Support Visual Awareness Video clip goes here. Doddle Buddy is the app used in this video.
Key Points about this Video• Often students have a difficult time, training their eyes to look and track purposefully. We are often prompting “Look at your paper.” or “Eyes looking”. Drawing and writing apps have significantly increased students ability to look at what they are coloring or writing as the iPad is a motivating item to look at. *This student’s filling in the space work before and after using apps to support looking.
#15- To Support Fine Motor and OT needs Video clip goes here.Wood Puzzle is the app used in this video.
Key Points about this Video• This student has a difficult time tucking his fingers under his thumb to create a pointer with his index finger.• The iPad can be a motivating tool for learning to develop pointing skills for PECS and PODD communication books.• By using a stylus with the iPad students can also work on the correct pincer grasp.
Place a sticker on the nail of the child’s pointer finger to support them in usingUse a glove and cut the tip of the index the pad of their pointer finger.finger off to create a more precise point.Have the student wear a whole glove onthe other to hand to brace the iPad andwork on hand dominance. Put two small sticker dots on a stylus and prompt students to pinch the dots for the correct pincer grasp.Touch Trainer, Dexteria, and Road Vehicle are three great apps for training small hands to work on the iPad. *You can also go into settings under general on your iPad and turn off Multitasking Gestures which can be helpful for students.
#16- To Support Communication and SLP needs• You can purchase apps that support communication and work on vocabulary, language concepts, pragmatics and articulation such as Artic Pix andTIP- If your speech clinician also has iPad, ask themto share what iPad apps they are using in session,then purchase those apps to reinforce skills beyondspeech time.
#17- To Teach Turn Taking Skills Video clip goes here. Preschool Memory Match is the app used in this video.
Key Points About this Video• A PODD communication book was used to encourage language from the student in white.• You can also download apps that support turn taking with various toys and items in the classroom. Two of our favorites are Sharing Timer and Turn Taker .
#18-To Build Pretend Play Skills and Interest • The Toca Boca App Series has been helpful in building pretend play skills and interest for everything from house play, to doctor’s office, grocery store, hair salon, restaurant and birthday party. * For info look on iPad Matrix under Toca Boca Christmas Hair Salon
#19- To Teach Skills through Social Stories• You can download social story apps such as Model Me Going Places.• Or create your own social stories with apps like Story Buddy and Pictello. .TIP- Autism App Tracker is always addingnew social story apps.
#20- To Teach Skills through Video ModelingThe pros. . .• It is quick and easy!• Students can watch it immediately.• It can be referred at anytime for re-teaching.The cons. . .• It cannot be edited.• It cannot be viewed on the projector.
Example of Video Modeling. . . Video clip goes here.
#21- To Support Individual Schedules and First/Then ConceptsThe Pros• It is easy and quick to create.• It can be easily edited.The Cons• It can be difficult to use for individual student if your iPad serves the needs of several students in your classroom.• Students are easily distracted by the iPad ‘s many uses making it difficult for them to see it as a tool for their schedule. They will try to click out of their schedule to get into other motivating apps.
#22- To Track and Reward Positive Behavior• You can download behavior and reward chart apps such as iReward.TIP- Autism App Tracker is always addingnew reward systems and behavior charts underthe topics Reward Systems and Behavior andSocial Skills.
#23- For Data Collection Purposes• You can download data collection apps to support and monitor student growth.• You can also take notes and manage your caseload with a variety of apps.TIP- Autism App Tracker suggests a varietyof data collection apps.
#24-To Share Progress• We often record video of our students working in the classroom to share with IEP team members and parents. The iPad can be a quick and easy medium to do just that.• We can showcase a timeline of videos showing student progress to parents and a receiving team during a transition meeting. This works especially well in showing progress with skills that are less measurable and more observable.
#25- To Build a Home and School Component• Since the use of the iPad in the classroom, several families have chosen to purchase iPads for their children to use at home. We have been able to use this as an opportunity to share educational apps with them that support individual goals. For example, with one student who is working on identify colors as an IEP goal, I suggested the Word Slapp app. Since the app is programmable, the parent has purchased it but only allows the student to work on the specific colors he has mastered at home as reinforcement. Then as he masters new colors in the classroom, I email his parent to add the colors to the app on his home iPad.
• Suggesting educational apps has been a great addition to our parent consultation meetings. A good app that I parents had recently found helpful is iTouch iLearn Life Skills: Morning Routines.• Great places for parents to look for fun educational apps for children to use at home are by downloading the Autism App Tracker and Moms with Apps.
Resource• Brady, L.J. Apps for Autism: A must Have Resource for the Special Needs Community. Arlington, TX: Future Horizons. 2011.
The Potential of the iPad is endless! If you have questions or if I can help you in anyway with your iPad endeavors,please feel free to contact me at email@example.com