Friday, October 7, 2011

Is that MY iPad?!

How in the heck did I wind up with a class set of iPads? Well it's quite and long story, one which I hope to eventually tell here, but for now the long and short answer is "my students". A few weeks ago, when I learned that having iPads was a possibility, I thought that the best way to make it a reality was to ask my 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. So, I posed a question to the 120ish brudgeoning adolescents that I have in my GT English and Reading classes: Would you like iPads in my class? Resounding doesn't quite describe their response as they'd began to discuss how amazing it would be to use them in English and Reading. So, I told them if they wanted them really really badly, they would have to ask.

So, for the next few days, most of my them made their way to our principal... During breskfast, during lunch, during silent lunch (when they got in trouble), during passing period, and after school to ask, "Can we have iPads in Mrs. Mutschler's class?" Eventually their request was granted and we were officially told that iPads were headed our way.

Currently, all of the Social Studies teachers at our school have a class sets of iPads. My courses would be the first ELA-R students in our school to use them as a class set. Obviously, I was elated. This device is so unique, and truly has limitless uses for a classroom. I began to think of the books that we could read, the journals that we could write, and the engagement the students would have.

But then, I realized with great privilege comes great responsibility. Once the iPads came, there would be no return, no PCs to fall back on. Fear began to set in... Not the kind of fear where you know that you are doomed, more like the fear you have before a big game (you know you CAN do it, but you know it won't be easy, and you know that you will have to work really hard).

So, today, during 3rd period, our campus tech came in to give me my iPad. I looked at him with great big excited-scared-disbelief eyes and whispered, "Is that MY iPad?!" Very calmly he looked back at me and said, "Technically it's the state of Texas' iPad, but it's yours to use." I took it from him gentally and unwrapped it, as a steady steam of 6th graders surrouned my desk. We all were almost quiet as the I carefully lifted it from it's box and placed it neatly in its case. Behold, the iPad.

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