10,000 Free Windows RT Surfaces for Teachers

#edtech #iste13 Honestly, I didn't really believe it until it really happened...

Last month Microsoft announced that they would give away 10,000 of their Surface RT tablets to educators attending the ISTE Conference this year. If you do the math that is well over $5,000,000 of hardware they're giving away. There had to be a catch.

So I filled out the online form, got a simple piece of paperwork signed by my administrator and when I arrived in San Antonio, I stood in line for 10 minutes and was handed a brand-spankin' new Surface RT. Holy crud, it was true!

This give away is part of Microsoft's bold move to gain a beachhead into the classroom, something to give them a leg up on the iPad. The iPad is dominating the tablet world, but other tablets are gaining ground, and this could turn out to be a strong play for Microsoft.

So it will be very interesting to see how this plays out over this next year.




Using the iPad in Schools and Classrooms

#elemchat #edchat #edtech #elearning Last Friday I hosted a local TV show that featured seventh grade students talking about how they use their iPads for school work. We started to show each other apps and such that we could do with our iPads (both the original iPad and the iPad 2) and before we knew it the hour was up and I was freaking out.

The first thing that amazed me was how natural it was for these young students to use this device. The actual iPad became invisible as they used it like a toolbox to look for different tools to help them with their school projects.

I would like to share a few of those ideas here:

Research: Hands down, you can’t beat every student having the Internet on their desks. These students could not be stumped, within seconds they could find out everything about anything. They also had other apps that were specific to an area of research. (World Atlas, Google Earth, CongressPro and This Day to name a few.)

Science: We had a great time showing off the amazing apps like SkyView, Star Walk and Solar Walk, but then we started to use SPARKvue to see how you could data log the actions of the iPad using it’s built in sensors. And finally, of course, we looked at the amazing “The Elements” app to take a peek of what textbooks are gong to be like in the future.

Books: Okay, there are the standard e-book type of books that you can read using iBooks, Kindle or Google Books apps on the iPad, but then there are the books that are apps. We looked at Dr. Seuss, and other titles that are unbelievably cool – interactive and fun to read.

Holy Crud! Apps: We edited a movie in iMovie – on an iPad 2. Then we recorded a podcast using Garageband, took and edited a few photos and then placed them in a report using the word processing app Pages.

My mind was spinning at the end. I am so jealous of these students and the opportunities they have sitting right in front of them and from what I have now seen – I think that most of them are going to take full advantage of it.

But now what do we do as teachers for this upcoming iPad generation?

iPad training tutorials (60+ videos)  at Atomic Learning.