Wednesday, March 27, 2013

BYOD: Teaching Smart with Smart Devices

Notes from session at TxDLA Conference
Presenter: Brenda Quintanilla, Crosby ISD

Crosby ISD's BYOD policy is part of their student handbook.

About Session:
This hands-on session will show real-world examples of how you can integrate  smartphones (devices) into the learning process. Bring your smartphone for an interactive experience. You will leave with activities and new ideas so that you can integreate these devices into your own classroom when you return.

5 Simple Suggestions for Making Mobile Learning Part of the Classroom:

1. Make it a Part of the Curriculum Mapping Process
In the planning process, discuss with other colleagues how mobile technology can be integrated with each lesson.  This will help ensure that the use of mobile technology isn’t sporadic and that technology is being used to master the content standards set forth by your state.  Align your implementation with the goals and objectives of your school (which should be aligned or exceed state standards).When you can make it relevant, it becomes practical.

Depending on how you anticipate integrating mobile technology, it may be advised that you steer away from targeting one specific piece of mobile hardware (ie – the iPhone).  Try to find ways where you can leverage the use of all mobile devices, not just one particular brand or subset.
2. Perform a Needs Assessment with Technology Surveys
Few people are familiar with the multitude of mobile technologies available.  After reviewing your completed curriculum maps, determine the gaps by pre-assessing your team using the proposed mobile technology as your framework for the survey.
3. Beta Test with Your Team
Find ways to test out your lessons with your team.  This doesn’t have to be complex – just enough to give you an idea of some of the hurdles you may expect or want to rectify prior to using it in class.
4. Allocate Specific Time for Collaboration
Maybe it’s just been my own experience as a classroom teacher, but if I don’t make time to collaborate, it doesn’t happen.  I don’t think that meeting for a specific amount of time is necessary, but knowing that we meet with the math department every Monday morning ensures that we have time to discuss imperative issues

5. Perform a Summative Evaluation
With administrators, this can even be performed while doing teachers’ summative evaluations.  But if you’re not an administrator, this can still be cyclically done (at the end of a unit, six weeks, semester, school year, etc).
Whatever role you play, ensure that your evaluation:
  • aligns with the original intents of your mobile technology strategy

  • provides timely and appropriate feedback

  • uses established criteria for assessing effectiveness

  • offers room for improvement
Activity One - as a Student - Using QR Codes
Have QR code go to an article that students can read.
Using QR Codes

  1. If you do not already have one, go to your phone’s app store and download a free QR reader.

  2. Scan QR codes and read the information.
    1. Hint: turn your phone to landscape view to see more of the text

    2. Hint: double tap the screen and your phone will resize the text to fit the screen.

Answer the following question:
Based on this article, provide at least one example of how students can us their phone in the classroom.
Activity Two - as a Teacher - Creating QR Codes
Creating QR Codes:
1.    In the internet browser, navigate to the website, image, youtube file, blog, etc., that you want your students to go to.
2.    Highlight and copy the URL of that site.
3.    Open a new browser window and log into any of the free QR Code Generators
a.    Examples: ,,
4.    I recommend (Google URL shortener) is also a good option as it shortens the URL, creating a more readable QR Code, and provides the QR Code at the same time.
5.    Chose the type of data QR that you want to create.
6.    Paste the URL into the content bar.
7.    You can also choose a foreground color if you like.
8.    Determine the type of output.
9.    The program will then generate a QR code for that URL.
10.  You will then copy that QR Code and past it into a document or print it to attach to something. 
11. Be prepared to give an example of how you will use QR Codes in your classroom.
Activity Three - as a Student - Using Google Earth
Using Google Earth
1.    Divide into Groups.
2.    Install the Google Earth app onto your smart phone/device.
3.    Go through the short tutorial on how to use it.
4.    Locate the search feature for Google Earth.
5.    Type or speak “Rome”.   
6.    Google Earth will fly you to the city of Rome.
7.    At the bottom of your phone window there is a black slide bar. 
8.    Touch it and pull it up.
9.    Scroll through the featured locations shown there. 
10. Find the location that is assigned to your group.
a. Quirinal Palace
b. Santa Maria In Trastevere
c.  Monument of Victor
d. Plaza del Popolo
e. Piazza San Pietro
f.   Trevi Fountain
g. Basillica di Santa Maria
h. The Vatican Museum
i.   Castel Sant’Angelo
j.   Colosseo
11. Press down on the picture of your group’s location.
12. You should see a short areal flyby video.
a. Note: Turn your phone to landscape view so you can read the text information about the location at the top of the screen.
13. When the move is done, tap on the location on the screen.
14. This should take you the internet and provide you more information about the location. 
15. Write down 3 things about your location.
16. Tap the back button to get back to google earth.
17. Tap on the X in the video to close the video screen.
18. Now share your location by send it to me
19. Let me know when you are finished.
20. Be prepared to present your 3 pieces of information about the location
Students must connect to the district's Wi-Fi when using mobile devices in the classroom.
Teachers spot check phones by having the students hold up their phones.

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