Category Archives: iPod

iPhones in K-12

This is my first post from a mobile device, an iPod Touch. I’m investigating possible use of iPhones in K-12. I’d be interested in hearing your ideas.


To follow up on what Tony Vincent said in his session with regards to the number of downloads in the App Store, MobClix has a dynamic page that keeps track of exactly that. It shows downloads by category as well as paid/free downloads, anywhere from the last 5 days to the last year.

Picks from the App Store


Tony Vincent hosted a free professional development session for ISTE’s SIGHC yesterday called, “Picks from the App Store”. The session lasted for about an hour and was very-well attended. For more info on this session, links to the archived video and the apps that Tony demonstrated, please see his blog post.

Image Credit:

Apple Exclusive Event for HHL members

Apple have contacted the Handheld Learning Community to offer members an exclusive opportunity to attend a free event they are hosting in London on March 12th. Here are the details:

The Rise of Mobility in Education

This event looks at the opportunity mobile IT devices give Educators to implement a stimulating 21st Century Learning infrastructure across their institution. More and more students are coming to school with mobile devices like iPod touches and iPhones. These devices provide easy, inexpensive access to virtually any Internet medium and augment notebook computers in exciting ways.

  • How can you use these devices for constructive purposes in the classroom?
  • How do they fit into an existing digital learning environment with notebook computers?

In this session, attendees will explore the models used to deploy mobile devices in the classroom. The briefing will be led by Gordon Shukwit, the Director of IT and Learning technologies group for Apple Worldwide Education markets. His team works globally with education institutions, government agencies and International schools as they define new learning environments. The event is aimed at Headteachers, ICT Leaders and Advisors from Schools and FE Colleges.

Date: 12th March 2009
Venue: EBC London
Time: 10:00am – 12:00pm or 14:00 to 16:00

Attendance via registration only at

See also the thread on the HHL forum.

To Touch or Not to Touch….


Personally, I think the iPod Touch has great potential for teaching and learning, both inside of school and out, and I really like the interface quite a bit. There is something about the tactile manipulating content on the screen with your fingers as opposed to having to use a mouse, stylus, or other input device (Think manipulating the world in Google Earth on a Smartboard with your hands. If you haven’t tried that, you should, it’s pretty cool).

I started by looking up some information about pilot projects at other education sites, and came up with (among the 174,000 hits I got off of Google):

Shepparton High School in central Victoria in Australia : where students used the devices for a variety of things. The most interesting quote from the short article is this one by the project’s lead teacher: “We assume that 14-year-olds are really technologically savvy, but they’re often not.” I think we tend to forget that. Here is also a discusson about a small iPod Touch project at another school in Australia.

Abilene Christian’s ACU Connected Project:  I blogged about this one extensively last week, when I saw their stuff at the Mobile Learning 09 Conference in Washington DC. They’ve done quite a bit in a short period of time, and I’m waiting to see what material they will be posting online from their own conference. I like what they are doing with the iPhone and iPod Touch with regards to communication with students, but I think that what they are doing is much more difficult to achieve in a K-12 environment, especially given the current hesitancy in K-12 for using any technology that allows students to communicate with each other and others outside of school.

In, “An iPod Touch for each student?”, there is discussion of Culbreth Middle School in Chapel Hill, NC getting iPod Touches. The story is accompanied by  some cautionary commentary by E.D. Hirsch (“”Technique and how-to ideas have taken the place of deciding what it is, exactly, we want these children to learn”) and a few other schools where the device are being used already. This project did get off the ground. Interesting quote from the Business Week article was made by AVID coordinator Chuck Hennessee who said

one of the only negatives he has seen so far with the program is that students sometimes would rather use the iPods than work with each other. But he said that can be a plus, too, because it cultivates independence.”

Other than that, the project seems to be going well.

Some additional interesting sources include:

Tony Vincent has a section devoted to the iPod Touch on his Learning in Hand site.

Kathy Schrock wrote  a short series of posts on her experiments with an iPod Touch (lots of good info here, exactly the type of stuff I was looking for)

Chris Webb’s post,  “Why an iPod Touch in Education?”  with a list of apps and some additional pertinent information.

An iPod Touch in Every Classroom by Kelly Croy, from Wes Fryer’s blog. Lots of odds and ends here.

And of course Apple’s Mobile Learning page,  and iTouch pages.

And that’s just the beginning. It remains to be seen (just like with any other “new” and “disruptive” technology) how quickly the iPod Touches will be adopted in K-12 and on what kind of scale. As I’ve said many times before, schools really need to start a serious discussion about how to integrate the use of student owned devices in the classroom, as it provides opportunities for learning that we currently do not really have (e.g. students in most mobile projects only have access to a device for a limited period of time, e.g. one year, and often only in school). Of course this type of implementation brings about a host of other issues, but that’s for another post …

Image Credit: “Touched” from littledan77’s photostream:

An iPod Touch for Each Student?

Stack of iPod Touches by The Pug Father.

About a week old, but still an interesting story about a roll-out of iPod Touch devices at a middle school in Chapel Hill, NC. While the article does not specifically state what the iPods will be used for, the principal has this to say:

“It’s a world we better figure out, because we can’t ask our students to come into a classroom, put those things aside and sit in a row and think we’re interesting,” she said.

“We’re just not that interesting.”

Of course there is the usual talk about technology being used as a tool to serve student learning, etc. etc. There is an interesting example at the end of the article about a school in Idaho that banned iPods because they were supposedly used for cheating. Is it just me or maybe we should be looking at new forms of assessment instead of falling back upon the usual ban and punish tactics?

And of course don’t forget to read the comments to the story, always enlightening…

Image Credit: “Stack of iPod Touches”, the Pug Father’s photostream,

Handheld Learning Presentation Proposals Due Soon!!

handheldlearning 2008

On Friday, May 30, to be exact. I’m still working on mine, how about you?

So far, all indications are that Handheld Learning 2008 is going to be the best handheld learning conference yet. The list of keynotes is first-class, and it’s worth attending the conference just to see them. However, I’m mostly looking forward to see what will happen when 1,000 people or so all have access to the same device (a Nintendo DS) for the duration of the conference.

You can register for the conference here.

 Submit your presentation proposals here.

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