What is a digital textbook? It is a textbook that can be accessed by computer-based technology, such as a computer, iPad, or e-reader.
Examples of using iPads in the classroom:
*Elementary Math classes can use the Math Quizzer app to learn, practice, and improve their skills in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Students are asked to use this app on their devices at home for homework and studynig and during the class lesson. The teacher provides a “Try It Yourself” time in between teaching the different topics, which allow students to take a break from just listening to the teacher and have the opportunity to see if they have learned a particular skill.
I would give my students time during the lesson to practice each skill anyway, but this app gives the students a more interactive experience. I might also want to make it a class game and divide the room in half, so they can play against each other and learn along the way.
*In order to teach elementary school students about the different parts of a story and how the relate to each other, teachers have used the app “Toontastic.” This app allows students to create their own story and share it with friends and family. The lesson starts out with teaching or reviewing the elements of a story that are found in the app, then the student can create a story. Students share their story with other classmates and are asked to retell their classmate’s story and maybe answer a few questions.
I might also create my own story as an example to show students both how to use the app and what the different sections of a story are.
My readiness for an iPad classroom:
*I know how to use an iPad, the app store, and how to connect an iPad to a computer or television for a larger view. However, I think I need to continue researching the different ways I can incorporate the use of an iPad into lessons to keep instruction interesting and interactive. I enjoy iPads for personal use and understand their practicality and usefulness in a classroom; however, I still don’t think they should replace paper textbooks. I like the fact that iPads elminate paper, but if students lose and damage textbooks it will be much more expensive to give them all iPads. I think that it is also a lot easier to break an iPad and there could be wasted class time due to technical difficulties.
I think that the paper vs. digital textbook debate does not have a right or wrong answer. It is based on personal preference. My personal preference is a paper textbook, but I understand the advantages of digital textbooks. Maybe I need to have my own iPad in order to fully understand its various uses and how it could improve classroom quality and participation.