Friday, October 18, 2013

Teaching and Learning using the Chromebook (TLLP 13-14)

It has been a little over a month since I introduced the Chromebook to my students. During this time they have been provided with opportunities to explore the device and learn their logins and passwords. It has been, and continues to be, a multi step process with sprinkles of frustration and success. The frustrations have come from the different passwords they need to input to use the device and issues around establishing a wifi connection. The successes involve students feeling a sense of accomplishment (by continuously trying and not giving up) and system level assistance in making our learning experience a smoother one. 

My project partner, +Ferdinand Krauss, has been assisting me in the classroom and working with our IT department to figure things out. He and IT recently made the decision to enable the Chromebooks to gain access to the wifi without login/password authentication. This decision proved to be a beneficial one for my students and myself as it saved us a lot of time and frustration when we used to the devices to do some Math. I found a great Math site the other day and thought this would be a great time to lead my students to some interactive online activities. 

We are working on Number Sense and Numeration right now, specifically number relationships. We had just finished talking about ordering numbers and number lines/hundred chart. I found a neat activity called "Order Numbers 1-100" . As soon as I saw this game I thought it would be a great way to engage them in trying something relatively fun and provide me with a quick assessment of who may be struggling with number order. The students had the opportunity to use the device to get on to the Internet and have some fun applying their understanding.

The students had to pop the balloons from the smaller number to the largest number: 

Here is the shot of the first level:

A screen shot of the positive reinforcement when they complete a level:

The activity starts off simple (3 balloons) and becomes more complicated as the student moves up the levels (level 5 = 6 balloons):

Many of the students had success with this activity. The activity was colourful and fun - they wanted to play! I observed the students working well together and they helped each other out. The students that flew through this were given a challenge to find another activity or two that would connect to what we are learning about right now. The students that needed some support worked with me and a few other students. 

Their time with the Chromebook wasn't all about Math. The majority of our time was spent learning some of the basics of technological literacy. The students were taught and worked on the following:

1) signing-in on the device,
2) becoming familiar with the address bar by typing in the address that I had projected for them on the whiteboard,
3) bookmarking the site,

--> working on the interactive game<--

4) closing the browser,
5) signing-out of the device

AND then their partner had to do the same things listed above in order to have this website book marked under their user account. 

Lots of awesome teaching and learning took place during this time. The students felt really good about their work using the Chromebooks and look forward to their next opportunity to use the device and the Internet to benefit their learning and demonstration of learning. 

If you have any questions/comments about this post, please feel free to leave a comment below or send me an email at

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