Three days ago, the mounting frustration finally escaped in the form of a proposal. As a veteran podcaster–and reluctant vidcaster–I found myself despairing at the thought of asking tech-newbie teachers in Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) situations to create flipped classroom content using a wide variety of classroom technology available in their classrooms.

What if, I wondered, we could provide teachers with an easy to use creation tool that integrates perfectly with existing district programs? In my mind, I pictured a jumble of technologies that would be replaced by the iPad as a creation tool for generating BYOT/blended learning content…it’s on the fact that there are so many disparate tools to combine to get the desired result.

To give you an idea of the varied technology needed to create with, let’s itemize the hardware and software list:

  • Hardware:
    • Desktop or laptop computer, Windows or Macintosh. 
    • Microphone, USB Logitech if you’re lucky or serial mic that may or may not work
    • Digital Camera with SD Card
    • Digital video camera
  • Software Possibilities: Again, remember having to learn how to use each of these separate tools to create one product.
    • Computer operating systems range from WinXP to Windows 7, Mac OS X.4 to X.8.
    • Audacity, if people know how to use it. (Free)
    • Moviemaker, various versions
    • PhotoStory, but no one is sure it’s installed
    • Screencast-o-Matic (free), SnagIt ($20), or Camtasia Studio ($179)
    • Audio/Video drivers may or may not be current

This is pretty startling. While this was cutting edge 10 years ago, with better alternatives available, it is safe to characterize it as a confusing mess of aging technology and software. Learning to use the individual tools–hardware, then software–is daunting for most teachers. What to do?

FINDING AN ALTERNATIVE
So, what’s the alternative? Throw all that stuff away and use an iPad. Really, why bother with all that?

One of the most valuable tools afforded by iPads is the ability to screencast — to combine audio, images, drawing and text on a whiteboard to create a video. Given the multitude of outputs afforded by this one type of app, what if we focused on accelerating learning through a single tool? Source: Redefining Learning through Screencasting

If I want to create a video for blended learning (e.g. Flipped Classroom) that can be easily embedded on the web, then consider the workflow that works in my district:

  1. Make a slideshow in Explain Everything ($1.50) or Educreations (free)
  2. Publish that narrated slideshow–which can have embedded web pages, images, slides from PPT, etc.–to your iPad’s Camera Roll.
  3. Publish from iPad Camera Roll to District PHP Motion solution.

Other districts that are allowing YouTube access for students (mine does not), can simply take advantage of a 2 step approach:

  1. Make a slideshow in Explain Everything ($1.50) or Educreations
  2. Publish that narrated slideshow–which can have embedded web pages, images, slides from PPT, etc.–to YouTube, or cloud storage solution (e.g. Dropbox, Drive, Box.net).
And, teachers aren’t the only ones who can take advantage of this. What if students used their iPads for this?

The redefinition (what I consider the magic!) leveraged by student screencasting comes from unintended and unprompted activities, conversations, and artifacts of learning. For example, in the classrooms where I have been conducting research on student screencasting, one of the most remarkable and consistent unintended outcomes was that students, no matter how young or old, and no matter what discipline, intrinsically reflected, self-­assessed, and adjusted their articulation of understanding. Even when the screencasts were being made for an audience of zero, this phenomenon occurred. None of the teachers involved in the study ever instructed students to play back their screencasts or make revisions. The students just did it.
Source: Reshan Richards,
Source: Reshan Richards, Explain Everything creator as quoted in Redefining Learning through Screencasting

Here’s one possible proposal…would YOU approve this proposal? What are the flaws with my thinking in this blog post?

Proposal for iBYOT:


Need: Classroom teachers at BYOT campuses-approximately 190 at 3 campuses–due to range of equipment available to them have a wide variety of professional learning needs. In addition to BYOT, they have to prepare their lessons on a wide range of non-standard equipment (e.g. obsolete laptops, desktops, iPads) that do not ensure uniformity of quality access. 

Teachers at BYOT campuses need a standard platform for content development that can match the devices students are bringing into their classrooms.

Proposal to Create the iBYOT Program
To standardize training and ensure high quality lesson development (e.g. device neutral apps, Edmodo+GoogleApps, flipped classroom learning), provide a BYOT iPad Package to each teacher when they commit to completing 5 face to face, 2 hour session (10 hours total). 

The iBYOT offer would be open to campus teachers who are involved in Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT). iBYOT Cohorts would be formed based on applicants from iBYOT campuses and in-depth support would be provided face to face.  BYOT Cohort would also enjoy online support and training, as well as collect iBYOT lessons in the in-house District video sharing site hosted by the Technology Department. 

PROFESSIONAL LEARNING
Professional Learning would focus around these topics at first:
  1. Intro to BYOT
  2. Crafting Professional Learning Networks
  3. Device Neutral Apps
  4. Virtual Classrooms with Edmodo
  5. Flipped Classroom Learning
And, it would model the use of technologies to enhance teaching and learning.
Budget for iBYOT
  • Allocate $80K for BYOT Teacher Initiative.
  • BYOT iPad Package Cost: $670 = ($575 for 32gig iPad+$45 case+$45 per display adapter+ $1.50 for Explain Everything app).
At a cost of approximately $670 per Pad with peripherals/apps, the District would be able to purchase 119 iPads for deployment to support the iBYOT Teacher Program

Simply, if you are a BYOT Teacher, you have the opportunity to participate in iBYOT Professional Learning and receive the BYOT iPad Package outlined above.



Check out Miguel’s Workshop Materials online at http://mglearns.wikispaces.com


Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

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