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General Chat Thread, Tablets in secondary schools good idea or bad ? in General; So I have always believed that tablets are a bad idea in secondary schools primary schools yes great but for ...
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    Tablets in secondary schools good idea or bad ?

    So I have always believed that tablets are a bad idea in secondary schools primary schools yes great
    but for the price of an IPAD I can buy a laptop(with a keyboard) and manage it through GPO
    even an android device (as we have just purchased a batch of, not my idea) will have cost us around £200 each with the relevant software to lock them down

    just so they can look flashy to parents visiting the school and because some people believe as they are great for sitting in front of the telly and browsing
    Facebook they must be great in schools

    Apple have done a great advertising campaign (it's what they are good at) at making us believe they are great for our kids

    what’s the general consensus on using tablets in a secondary school environment ?

    Do you or Don't you have them ?

    Stef

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    If you've got enough open access computer suites, tablets can make a great addition to the toolset for education.

    If you haven't got enough open access computers, tablets can fulfil many of the functions adequately, and have their own strengths as well.

    If you have enough computers, and you abandon them for tablets without appreciating the capabilities are different and set expectations appropriately their will likely be pain.

  3. Thanks to psydii from:

    tmcd35 (3rd March 2014)

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    I don't see much point, but it depends on what they are for. We plan to get some for PE, where the portability is key, but otherwise Chromebooks look like a better bet for us.

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    we have aprox 500 computers for 700 students, I’d rather have used the money to update them, as quite a few are over 5 years old . The Tablets will be used for browsing the net very unlikely for anything else

    Stef

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    seawolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sjpage10 View Post
    So I have always believed that tablets are a bad idea in secondary schools primary schools yes great
    but for the price of an IPAD I can buy a laptop(with a keyboard) and manage it through GPO
    even an android device (as we have just purchased a batch of, not my idea) will have cost us around £200 each with the relevant software to lock them down

    just so they can look flashy to parents visiting the school and because some people believe as they are great for sitting in front of the telly and browsing
    Facebook they must be great in schools

    Apple have done a great advertising campaign (it's what they are good at) at making us believe they are great for our kids

    what’s the general consensus on using tablets in a secondary school environment ?

    Do you or Don't you have them ?

    Stef
    Neither the tablet NOR the laptop will do any good if the school does not have (1) a well thought out strategy of integrating them into the curriculum (2) well defined student outcomes to aim for, and (3) teachers who are capable of and committed to accomplishing these two things.

    iPads are capable of providing excellent educational outcomes and are better in some things than a laptop, and worse in some things than a laptop. But, like any tool it must be fit for the task at hand. It does no good to try to use a hammer to fix a pipe if a spanner is required, or to use a spanner to try to hammer a 10-inch nail into a post.

  7. Thanks to seawolf from:

    speckytecky (2nd March 2014)

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    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    We find that iPads as staff devices have had a positive impact on departmental efficiency and SLT's ability to take notes, watch the cameras if they need to etc. For pupils on the other hand, we've got about fifty Android devices in two sets of 32 (bookable by all) and 18 (only for Science). The Science corridor doesn't have any suites near it so they get used mainly for Internet research during lessons (guest network, everything goes through SmoothWall SSL login, no 3G) or access to the school network (RDP, terminal server VM with capacity for around fifty users) to complete work. They're locked down with SureLock and I can image out new tablets using ADB in about 10 minutes. The only disadvantage is having to change things across multiple devices because Meraki isn't working here at the moment and I can't afford the SureLock MDM, but so far those requests have been minimal.

    We also need to make sure our new VLE will be fully tablet-friendly as, once it is, I can foresee a hugely positive impact if lesson materials are available to pupils using school devices (here) or their own (at home) 24/7. Strategically my recommendation to SLT once that's in place will be to trial flipping the classroom in subjects like Science and monitor for impact on pupil progress. I'm more interested in 3LoP than KS4 outcomes at the moment for evidencing the impact here, as you can measure it more quickly (that debate is a huge can of worms though).

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    Marshall_IT (2nd March 2014), speckytecky (2nd March 2014), VeryPC_Colin_M (3rd March 2014)

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Useful thread - thanks Steph. I posted something similar recently but prehaps so not well thought out as yours. My school is a KS3 for boys with Emotionsl and Behavioural Difficulties. We have classes of 8 and every classroom has workstations or sadly in a couple of rooms laptops (the lads hate them). Teachers all have iPads and we run Air Server for IWB access.

    A member of our SMT recently started pushing the idea of five sets of 8 iPads for use by the lads so they can use Apps such as Pages allowing them to say take photos with the device of say a science project and integrate it, print it straight away and ultimately save a copy for evidence.

    Personal I don't feel the case for them is anywhere near proven and given the fact that three staff have recently 'broken' iPads (one PE Instructor actually used his to shield his head from a ball in a gymnasium) I am not at all enthusiastic. Now if someone could actually prove that the expenditure would make a difference to the Educational outcomes then naturally my attitude would change!

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    I still think any notion of "paperless" schools, 1:1 tablets is too gimmicky to be of any actual long term benefit to pupils. Staff certainly, it can be a valuable asset, but it depends on the staff & school too as has already been said.

    However not every school is the same and certain things work better. I used to help with a special needs school and the use of iPads & other mobile devices there greatly improved achievement. I don't know if that's due to working conditions, moral, student motivation or otherwise but that was certainly a "proven case". It's by no means one size fits all though. For a new school with new staff maybe.I strongly believe that a good yet old fashioned teacher that can command the respect of their pupils is likely to get better results than a modern teacher too embodied in technology. Maybe a mixture of the two would work wonders.

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    Our PE department have used them to film pupils' efforts during e.g. gymnastics or the javelin, to then play back and give a more detailed critique (not negatively), for example along the lines of "see where your elbow is just there... it needs to be a little higher as you go in for the shot". English have used them to take a photo of a piece of work and then AirPlay it to the room's computer/projector/IWB setup, highlighting and annotating to support achievement and add an element of impromptu AfL in the classroom.

    And other such buzzwords...

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    I agree, in this sort of instance using such Apps as Coaches Eye this is an extremely useful tool. On the other hand I think the case for students to actually have the devices to use themselves in the classroom is far from proven and can achieve nothing in reality that can't be done using a standard PC.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    Our PE department have used them to film pupils' efforts during e.g. gymnastics or the javelin, to then play back and give a more detailed critique (not negatively), for example along the lines of "see where your elbow is just there... it needs to be a little higher as you go in for the shot". English have used them to take a photo of a piece of work and then AirPlay it to the room's computer/projector/IWB setup, highlighting and annotating to support achievement and add an element of impromptu AfL in the classroom.

    And other such buzzwords...

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    It's much easier to hold a tablet when taking photos/videos, plus most laptops wouldn't have rear-facing cameras. Also, no logon/logoff times. Then again, you could just get a few digital cameras for cheaper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sjpage10 View Post
    what’s the general consensus on using tablets in a secondary school environment ?

    Do you or Don't you have them ?

    Stef
    We are most likely going to go Tablets for the new Year 7s in September but not iPads. Our aim is to stick with Android 4.2 devices, these are cheaper compared to iPads and do 95% the same thing. The 5% they don't do we don't need to worry about.

    As others have said: Fit For PURPOSE, this one phrase is what everything is about. Our current Netbooks do everything we need them to do but unfortunately are very easy to damage, very easy to pick apart, very easy to install malware. My view is a class of 30 kids should be able to walk in to a classroom and get working ASAP and not resort to needing help constantly from IT Support.

    Tablets are quicker to turn on, get working but they are limited. It does mean APP only software and depending on what your plan is it does also depend on being managed or more BYOD.

    We are going to the Android 4.2 because Students can bring their own, the cheaper devices are available for little over £100 compared to the iPad price tag. We can also recommend devices, get some for Staff.

    There are a lot of threads regarding BYOD, Tablets, Laptops, Netbooks etc for Students and I would highly recommend reading all of them. I would also talk to people unofficially behind closed doors, some people who are "honest" can some times have threats hanging over their heads. I am aware of a few people (including teachers) at other Schools who are not allowed to voice their opinion.

  17. Thanks to mthomas08 from:

    VeryPC_Colin_M (3rd March 2014)

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    Quote Originally Posted by psydii View Post
    If you've got enough open access computer suites, tablets can make a great addition to the toolset for education.

    If you haven't got enough open access computers, tablets can fulfil many of the functions adequately, and have their own strengths as well.

    If you have enough computers, and you abandon them for tablets without appreciating the capabilities are different and set expectations appropriately their will likely be pain.
    ^This.

    It's my starting point with SLT as we work out where we are going over the next 5-6 years. What have we got? What do we need? What would we like?

    My crystal ball predicts a future of laptop trolleys and BYOD tablets...time will tell.

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    I think they are an addition to compliment existing equipment - not a replacement. I would not even think about replacing all of our IT suites with iPads - but our 32 ipad suite has gone down a storm with many departments using it (some I wouldn't have expected).

    You'll find they are VERY useful for certain things, with certain apps and for those certain things you would not want to go back to a PC.

    One thing to note is that iPads are a pain to manage compared to ative directory aware PCs. Apple have LOTS and LOTS of work to do in the coporate/education arena before they are truly suitable for mass deployment.

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    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    Agree with this 100%. We've been using the Nurvo 10" Budget models that tick all these boxes as they're only around £100 from CPC.

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