Last Thursday evening, five SCWriP fellows gathered for our first iPad study group session. Two of us sat on my couch here in Santa Barbara, while the others used Skype and Google Hangout to join us from Bakersfield, Oxnard, and Ithaca, NY. With our computer volumes turned full blast, we sat and discussed different ways each of us use iPads for teaching. A lot of the conversation this time around focused on specific apps that each person uses. By sheer coincidence, our group represented teachers at every level of schooling- elementary, junior high, high school, and college. Despite this difference in grade levels, we found many apps were applicable to us all.
Our group, which received grant funding this year to buy one iPad to pass between classrooms, plans to meet about once a month, but to add to the conversation via a googledoc whenever inspiration or insight hits. Our grant also included registration for one member to attend the annual International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference in San Diego to gather more ideas and broaden our understanding of what an iPad can do in a classroom. After our meeting, we decided that one of us going wasn't enough--especially as we're all in different grades. We're currently seeking grant opportunities to fund registration for the rest of us.
For me, this study group represents the true essence of SCWriP--teachers binding together to learn from each other and pursue a deeper understanding of their practice. As with every pursuit of this nature, it is the journey that matters. That's one of the reasons why teaching resonates with me- it is a quest for learning that has no end point, but rather increasingly profound paths to venture down.
If you'd like to join our iPad study group, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We'll be meeting again on April 12, 5:30 PST. If meeting once a month is too much of a commitment, but you want to listen in on our conversations about iPads, I'm including the googledoc we are collaborating on here: