No iPads? No Problem.

My school is in the middle of SBAC testing, so my class set of iPads has been commandeered for math/ELA testing.  Therefore, I’ve had to rethink my lessons to accommodate our non-iPad-ness.

And what I came up with actually turned out to be pretty cool.

I had my students create an app proposal for a historical figure from Japan:  Prince Shotoku.  Students had to write the purpose/function of the app, how it would have helped Prince Shotoku be an effective leader, illustrate the app icon, and cite textual evidence that proves that Prince Shotoku needed this app.

Because of our block schedule, my Periods 1, 3, 5 and Periods 2, 4, 6 did this assignment, but with a slight twist.

Periods 1, 3, 5 created this assignment on a piece of paper and presented it to class.  We didn’t have the iPads that day.  They were boisterous, engaged, and surprisingly adept at standing up in front of the class to present their work.

But when Periods 2, 4, 6 had World History, I was able to snag the iPads for a couple of days.  So those classes did the same assignment but they created it in Educreations.  =)  Loved, loved, LOVED what those students did!

Because I was pleased with what the students did and because they were so engaged in this activity, I decided to continue the assignment, but make it individual instead of a group.  Students had to make an app for a shogun, daimyo, samurai, or regent (can you tell that we’re on our Medieval Japan Unit?).  Using the same requirements, students had to write the purpose/function, how it would have helped that person, illustrate the app icon, and cite textual evidence.  Students created this app proposal in Popplet and then posted it in their Edmodo small group.  I liked this assignment as well because students had a chance to see what their peers created.

Though my students didn’t actually create a “real” app…their app proposals were quite impressive.  Maybe next year, for our new digital media class students can take this assignment a bit further and perhaps do some coding.  Hmmmmm.

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