Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Novelty iPad Apps to increase motivation

I like running. Also I enjoy throwing things and jumping - all components of our athletic units in elementary. But like the students, I often find it hard to motivate myself to run sometimes especially when the temperatures are in the low 30’s oC, in the middle of a winters day in the tropics.

Fortunately this year, as well as  playing a variety of running games and having different objects to throw, I have also been able to utalise the ipad to increase motivation, as well as develop the teaching and learning, but that is a different blog post!

It is amazing when the ipad chooses a distance to run it is much more acceptable than if I asked. I have used ‘Decide Now’ - a spinning wheel,  to choose the warm up tag games or to choose how far they need to run. It is amazing the excitement it generates as they watch the wheel spin and see what they have to do - even when they know the answer will involve running in the heat! The app allows you to store an unlimited number of wheels, each with up to 10 categories. Similar is ‘Make Dice Lite’, which has also been used. The free version only allows you to store 6 dice, but you can have several dice on the table at a time.

ChatterPix for Kids is another app the kids enjoyed. I photographed a throwing implement, and then recorded the instructions on how to throw it. You then draw a mouth on the app and on playback the object speaks your instructions!! This is one app that I know several students have gone home and used.

As an alternative to seeing how far the students can throw, we have measured how fast the object is going through the air using RadarGun. There is lots of effort going into seeing if they can throw a nerf rocket goes faster than the school bus.

The ability to watch their performance is also a great motivator. This year I borrowed a ipad stand and set up the ipad with BAM video delay. The students could jump into the pit and come out and watch their jump, as the next person was jumping and being recorded. It does not offer the detailed analysis of ubersense, but it does allow all the students in the class to watch themselves and check a particular teaching point all on one ipad. 

1 comment:

  1. Hey Ben,

    I love decide now, I totally agree that it helps motivate students. The whole process sort of gamifies running, which is great.

    I haven't used chatterpix but it looks hilarious.

    Love how technology can help motivate kids and get them passionate about running around and throwing things.