iPads: student explorations 2

Feeling inspired from last week’s lesson, I was glad that I had a week to think about how to follow up. The biggest challenge I found in thinking of something was the level of my students and what language they would need to review their apps. It took me a while to think about how I could simplify this enough & give them the language they would need.

Another chance corridor encounter meant that I was peer observed during this lesson too, & I know following this that this tutor has now used the iPads with her students too so I’m looking forward to chatting more about this & seeing what we can learn together.

Here’s an outline of the class:

lead in: we briefly recapped on last week’s lesson & the students got into the same pairs to review the apps they looked at. They were pretty much straight on task with this & needed minimal support to get started. Some went back to their original apps, others started to look for others in the app store (I don’t know if this says something about the apps or the individual students??)

App review: I had prepared a sample app review. This considered of the following:
price:
features:
likes & dislikes:
star rating:
I can get this on my phone:

For my sample I’d chosen Grammaropolis. So each pair had to explore the app, read the review and find three mistakes in the review. This provided the students with a model text. I split the pairs & created two

Grammaropolis

Grammaropolis

groups, so there was someone from each pair in each group. They had to share their apps with each other and complete the review.

This was certainly more challenging for the students. They had to talk to each other (heaven forbid!!), investigate another app & complete the review. I was a busy busy lady during all this. There was cajoling done to get them into the new groups, & then some students needed more cajoling to talk to each other. Others were asking for help on what to write & again for some students I became the scribe as they said what they liked about the apps.

I was surprised about how much encouragement they needed to get their own phones out. Only one student seemed keen to do this & he was happy when he found one of the apps on his phone (he also explained how he’s saving for the latest Galaxy as his phone’s not that great!) He took another student’s iPhone off him & found an app for him. Not too sure that this bodes well for hoping that this may inspire the students to self-study out of class!!

plenary: I asked each group to share their favourite app & we discussed how they could use these activities to practice their English at home.

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