This week in data collection…
I keep thinking that I’ll know exactly what I’m going to find in each session—but children are just fascinating and NOT to be taken for granted! My cooperating teacher has been utterly invaluable this week as I’ve been conducting my research. It helps that she’s a bit more familiar with Mac devices and has been toying around with the class iPad in the mean time. She came across a beauty of an app called “Too Noisy.” It works miraculously with her K-1st grade classroom. When the noise level gets too loud, the monitor goes into the red and the tablet screen is big enough for the students to see for themselves. It’s also portable enough so that she can use the app for teaching them how to quietly walk down the hallways (Kegl, K., a personal communication, Oct. 16, 2013).
I did some assessment tests this week to gauge my focus group’s reading levels and possible interests. I had a very difficult time finding assessments for individuals in a digital media. Most assessment were for entire school sites, and we just didn’t need that many. So my assessments were on paper. I had one student in particular who had an extremely difficult time with this. I knew this student, and knew that she was an affluent reader. However, she experienced test anxiety and compensated by dramatically reacting to the littlest sound that occurred in the room. It’s a mixed grade room with many activities going on at once—some noise was inevitable. The student wasn’t getting anywhere with the paper assessment. Eventually, after several pep talks that amounted to little results, the teacher set the student up with the teacher’s personal iPod and a pair of headphones. She played low-volumed background music and encouraged the student to finish the assessment. It was night and day! The student felt secure enough to complete the assessment in minimal time.
I’ve began compiling a concept map of the devices that I have observed being used in the classroom during my time there. Results of progress are going to be tricky to display, as we are still near the beginning of the school year in a 1st grade room, and much of the studies are still introductory. But I am delighted to see how these tech tools are coming in handy.
Kegl, K. (2013) a personal communication on Oct. 16, 2013
Walsall Academy. (2013). Too noisy. (1.7) [iPad]. Retrieved from iTunes store