Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Five key factors to consider when choosing a tablet

I read an article called, "How To Choose the Right Tablet For Your School".  It lists the five key factors to consider before choosing a device for your students.

Overall, keep this in mind before you choose a device - it is the way you teach and interact with your kids that matters the most.  Place your materials online, structure your lessons to take advantage of the Internet, have your kids collaborate on projects, and offer immediate feedback if you want your classroom to truly change. Ultimately the device shouldn't matter in the end.  You can create a one-to-one program with Kindle Fires ($200), netbooks ($300), Chromebooks ($400), or the new iPads ($500) if you have the right people and the right motivation.

The five key factors from the article are:
  1. Consider your learning goals - your focus needs to be on improving instruction 
  2. Figure out your digital curriculum strategy - teachers need to build their curriculum first before a device is chosen
  3. Pick your management style - determine if or how or who you will manage the devices
  4. Set your price point and refresh cycle - know from the start how many computers you will buy each year
  5. Choose your top features - each device has different features; know what you need before you choose

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Subscribe to news sites using your cell phone

One of the best changes in technology in the last two years involves improvements made to our cell phones.  The cell phone has become the center of information for many people.  We use apps to have the information delivered straight to us, rather than having to go to different sites to get information.  Groupon deal of the day?  You can check their site daily, or you can subscribe on your phone and have that little DING go off telling you that a new deal has arrived.  Your friend just announced on Facebook that he got engaged.  Yes, you really found out through Facebook.  Did you get the alert on your phone as soon as he posted it, or did you find out two days later when you logged on?  The cell phone has become the instant connection to news that is important to us.

Subscribing to news sites can be a little harder, but as usual, someone has an app for that.  It is called an RSS Reader, and you can download one for your Android or iPhone.  To use the app, you visit the web page where you read your news, open your RSS Reader app, and click on a "subscribe" button.  Any time a new article is posted it will automatically be sent to your phone.

I can download all the latest news from D211 by subscribing to their new blog called D211 Post, a new blog that is very mobile-friendly. 

Click here to download "Feedly" for free on your Android phone.

Click here to download "Free RSS Reader" for free on your iPhone.