So… it was my plan to have regular postings. But as the saying about best laid plans goes…… I think a lot about what I should do and say- I just wish I had more time to do it in. I am going to try this again.
My first post was about how I got to this stage, so my second post : What I am doing now…
Surprise, surprise! Most of the time I feel like I know what I am doing with ipads in choir. My most used app right now is “Explain Everything” . I think it has made a huge difference in teaching my students how to read scores. I started my 5th graders out with some rounds – scanned a few to use and have a project called Warmups. I use the arrow option most – sometimes I use it almost like a bouncing ball to show my students how to follow along. The first arrow almost always points at the repeat sign – I put a new round up yesterday and one of my students reminded me that I needed to point to the repeat sign. Progress! Today I took the round singing to a new level – I drew phrase marks on the page. Instant understanding! I have each of the current repertoire songs scanned in to start teaching how to read a score. I have keynote presentations that I use to introduce new learning targets – the daily plan (Pages) is displayed as students come into the room. I might wear my homescreen button out switching between apps that I project.
My students are using SAS flashcards to learn choir vocabulary – their favorite part is finding images that help them remember the words. When I put something on the board that I want them to keep track of – they form camera lines to take a picture. I do this in “concert formation” and it doubles as walking on and off risers practice. I am using Schoology more and more often for simple assessments and I think my students are becoming “googleform experts”.
What I am looking for next…
I am searching for a way to assess each student using a rubric and to have an easy way to communicate that with them instantly. I have 480 choir students and emailing each of them an individual document would be so cumbersome. I’ll keep working on that.
I have quite a few apps on my ipad that the students don’t have though. One is a score reader…. I am still giving my younger students paper scores. It’s tough to remember good posture when you are holding up an ipad. My older students save their scores to iBooks and so far they have been read only. I am going to try and have them open them in neuannotate to start doing score markings. I need to find the best solution for this.
What I think about…
I am in such a different world now than I was back in the days of handing out scores that “fall apart because they aren’t stapled”, and expecting students to lightly mark the score in pencil so we can erase them later. I learned how to explain things well in the old days but I really like being able to use the visual.
One of my former students is now a teacher in my building. She was standing in the door watching me today as I started explaining the parts of the score to my older kids. Her comment: “Wow – if we could have done it this way when I was in choir – we could actually have figured it out”. That’s good to know!