ATU292 – iPad High School Revisited – Part 3

first_imgPodcast: Play in new window | DownloadYour weekly dose of information that keeps you up to date on the latest developments in the field of technology designed to assist people with disabilities and special needs.Special Episode:We replay parts 1, 2 and 3 of iPad High School from a time when iPads were starting to be widely used in a Central Indiana High school——————————If you have an AT question, leave us a voice mail at: 317-721-7124 or email [email protected] out our web site: https://www.eastersealstech.comFollow us on Twitter: @INDATAprojectLike us on Facebook:——-transcript follows ——WADE WINGLER: Hi, this is Wade Wingler with the INDATA Project at Easter Seals crossroads in Indiana with your Assistive Technology Update, a weekly dose of information that keeps you up-to-date on the latest developments in the field of technology designed to assist people with disabilities and special needs.Welcome to episode number 292 of Assistive Technology Update. It’s scheduled to be released on December 30, 2016.Before we get started with the show here today, I just need to jump in and let you know that we are doing something different. These shows are being released in December 2016 when we are sort of taking some time off for the holidays and resting and relaxing a little bit. I decided, instead of doing new show during this period of time, we are going to go back to one of our favorite series that was done about five years ago called iPad high school. This was early in the days of assistive technology update. We visited Danville, Indiana high school which was one of the local schools where my daughter at the time was going to high school. They decided to go digital. They were one of the first schools in Indiana to totally go paperless and do iPads for everything. For three weeks in a row, we are going to do iPad high school part one, iPad high school part two which was originally recorded in 2011, and then we are going to do iPad high school follow-up which was recorded a year later to see how the implementation went.I hope that you enjoy this nostalgic look back at how the iPad impacted the central Indiana high school, my family, my daughter, my grandparents and walk down memory lane with us.After the first of the year, we will be back with our regular format of news and interviews and all those other kinds of things. In the meantime I would love to do sort of an iPad impact episode sometime early in 2017. Here is what I need you to do. I need you to call our listener line and let us know how the iPad has impacted your assistive technology life in the last five years. You can do that by calling our listener line at 317-721-7124. Let us know how the iPad has been a big deal or not with you and your assistive technology. If we get enough of those comments together, we will put together a whole episode as sort of a follow-up on this iPad high school we visited. Without further delay, here we go with walking down memory lane and our episodes of iPad high school.***KATIE: Hi, I’m Katie, and this is my iPad, and this is your Assistive Technology Update.WADE WINGLER: Hi, this is Wade Wingler with the INDATA Project at Easter Seals crossroads in Indiana with your Assistive Technology Update, a weekly dose of information that keeps you up-to-date on the latest developments in the field of technology designed to assist people with disabilities and special needs.Welcome to a special episode of Assistive Technology Update. About a year or so ago, my daughter Katie, who attends high school in Danville, Indiana, learned that her high school was going to start replacing textbooks with iPads. That caused all kinds of stir in conversation and those kinds of things throughout our entire community. Parents were talking and students were talking about what that means and are they really going to do it. They did. In fact, a year ago we did a two-part special called iPad high school where we talked about everything from the special ed to cost implications, what about when students break them, is this going to help our children’s education. We talked about a lot of different things. We interviewed several people. We thought it might be useful to go back and see how it’s going at Danville and the place we like to call iPad high school.For the follow-up interviews that we have here, I sat down with Brad Fisher and Lyle messenger, two of the imitators at Danville community school Corporation who have a lot to do with the iPad project. I also sat down with a microphone on the back porch with my daughter Katie to talk about how things are going a year later.We’re going to spend time talking about the usefulness of the iPads, what the damage looks like when they do get broken, or how often they get broken, advice that Katie has about people who use iPads, and talk a little bit about the future of iPads and iPad high school in Danville. We will start with a couple of quick interviews introducing our speakers and talking about how things have been going for the last year.***WADE WINGLER: Katie, we are sitting on the back porch, right?KATIE: Yep.WADE WINGLER: About a year ago you and I were sitting in our old house and old bedroom talking about the iPads.KATIE: Yep.WADE WINGLER: At that point Danville high school was getting ready to roll out iPads to all students. You are just starting to figure out how to use it. I went back and listen to the episode and you spent some time showing your great-grandparents how it worked. I spent some time talking with the school about what happens if they break, how this was going to impact the education of kids in Danville and all those kinds of things. How would you describe your feelings towards the iPad and the whole project a year ago?KATIE: I had mixed feelings about it at the time because it was still really buggy, they were working a lot of stuff out. It was hard to love for a while because they were so much going on that you can get anything done till they fixed everything. It’s much better this year. They’ve gone the kinks worked out. They got some new apps on there so it’s better.WADE WINGLER: Not to mention that this time last year you were just figuring out how to be a freshman in high school. Now you are a big bad sophomore.KATIE: Yeah, I guess.WADE WINGLER: Tell me a little bit about the last year using the iPad. You had it during the last school year. You didn’t have it over the summer. You got it back this fall when you started your sophomore year. Tell me how you have used it so far.KATIE: Basically just the same way we used it last year. Do homework assignments, email to teachers, plenty of apps to take notes on, make presentations, make projects and pictures and posters, print stuff out because we had a wireless printer that can connect to the iPad so I can look something up on here and if I need a picture for a project I can print it out. That’s helpful. It’s got Kahn Academy which has videos on how to do math and other subjects. I haven’t used it a lot but I have downloaded some geometry videos I can watch it I’m stuck. Stuff like that.WADE WINGLER: Give me some examples of things you’ve done with your iPad just today.KATIE: Took notes in class organizer. In one history we got in a group and read. It was my responsibility to take notes and email them to everybody. It’s stuff like that that I do.WADE WINGLER: Thumbs up or thumbs down on the iPad?KATIE: In general I say thumbs up.***WADE WINGLER: Today on Assistive Technology Update, we are back in the field at Danville committee high school in Danville, Indiana, and it’s been about one year since we took a look at the iPad deployment project that happened out here. We are meeting in a student lunchroom today. I feel like the bill is going to ring any minute and I’m going to get some soggy pizza and drink chocolate milk and have my old-fashioned school lunch. Enough from memory lane. I have Brad Fisher and Lyle Messinger with me today. Gentlemen, how are you?BRAD FISHER: Good.LYLE MESSINGER: Fine.WADE WINGLER: Thanks for taking time out of your day today and talking with us about iPad has go one year later. It was about this time last year that you guys were embroiled in piles and boxes of iPads and figuring out how to deploy around 1000 iPads to all the students and faculty here at Danville community high school. We spent about an hour on our show talking about what that will look like, what might the impact on the community be, and what that will do for students in the school and those kinds of things. I have a few questions for you. The biggest one is a year later. How are things going?LYLE MESSINGER: We were successful in our initial deployment to the high school which was 9-12, one-to-one. That was around 900 total. We completed our deployment somewhere around things giving. At that point individual staff members begin to leverage them in their classroom. It took some time – we were constantly testing the technical aspect of it, how well they connect, the density of the building, basically what was the workflow, how we get materials to the students and from the student. All these were in the testing phase. We allow teachers to go at their own pace to begin with. It was slow and spotty, and we saw some applications that were just natural for it, like our math program was a natural fit for it and it took off like crazy. Others were more challenging. How do you use it for a PE class? There were other things we anticipated and were pleased they became non-issues. We are as much pleased on things that didn’t happen as things that did happen, including things like our lost, damaged, and stolen rate. We projected that around five percent. We were well below that. We did a constant analysis of our environment. When we did have one that was damaged, lost, or stolen, we did a pretty exhaustive investigation as to why so that in the future we can perhaps avoid some of these damages and losses. We are really happy with that. A lot of things that could have happened didn’t happen.The major thing that was just absolutely delightful as we had significant support from the community. They have continued to be extremely supportive with the technology. I think not only do they allow it and there is not much pushback, but they are embracing it. It always amazes me when we have a number of parents that say, yeah, we had to get another one or I had to get one, or if they attach themselves to the process. Often not only is it a change in technology and routine for the individual student in the classroom and the educational process, but it extends farther than that which is pretty exciting.***WADE WINGLER: Now that we’ve had these iPads for about a year, the question becomes are they working, are they doing anything, is this better than the way it was before with textbooks and more traditional ways of doing school? Here is a little feedback from Katie as well as the folks at school.Talk to me about what you guys are seeing in terms of the academic side of the use of the iPad. I know it’s only been a year. I know you’re probably still gathering data. What kind of preliminaries that are you seeing in terms of the impact on the kids’ grades, how they approach the curriculum, and that kind of thing?BRAD FISHER: I think it’s looking at it incident by incident and expanding of those. Lyle mentioned mass. That’s a good way to talk about some of the opportunities that we provided. What they have done, in addition to taking their textbook and content they would distribute to the students, that is pretty much electronic. In addition they created videos of all the types of problems that match and paired to the standards and have those for the students so that they can download those off-line. I would say it’s not a technology project. Front and center it’s about the learning. I don’t think it’s as simple as saying the iPad yields success or doesn’t. It’s a whole lot of variables. In the case of math, I feel very good that the work they are doing, that combines with the iPad, has produced solid results for them, not only with the iPads but again with the effort that they put around it.A companion initiative to our electronic education and customization – and we are just beginning and now. We’ve been working on it for several months but it’s beginning to take form now – is researching the effectiveness. Is this really going where we want it to go? We can give anecdotal evidence and we can say things, but the proof is in the pudding. Right now we’ve contacted the Indiana State University hoping that they would have some research done so we could see areas that it does make a difference, positive and negative. Negative is always an opportunity to get better. Things that we do well, we can leverage those in different areas. It’s time to step back and take a look, is this really going where we want it to go?WADE WINGLER: Excellent.***WADE WINGLER: Would you describe the use of the iPad now as more exciting, less exciting, more useful, less useful than you thought it was going to be a year ago when it was still brand-new?KATIE: There is a lot of ways I would say more useful. If you’re so going old school like most schools, you have to sit and write out all your notes which takes a lot of paper and make sure hand sore. That’s definitely easier to keep things organized because also with paper it’s easy to lose. It just falls out of the binder or you throw away the wrong paper. It is easy to delete the wrong thing – I’ve done that before – but it’s harder to lose stuff.WADE WINGLER: When I talked to the folks at school, I asked whether or not they had any data, any real numbers about the usefulness of the iPad. I think it’s fair to say it’s too early to tell whether people are getting better grades. They offered anecdotal evidence, stories about students who were doing better. I’m not going to ask you to produce statistics. How do you feel having an iPad has impacted your grades?KATIE: I feel like it’s with stuff – as long as you are in Wi-Fi, you can get on and look at your grades. Like today I went through and I looked at all my grades and made a list of the incompletes I had and made a list of those so I can hopefully make some of those at. It’s stuff like that. Before the iPads, we would have to get on the computer at home and write them all down. It’s also easier because now I can sit here – like just a minute ago, I had a question about some of the zeros in my Spanish class so I just put my iPad out and emailed my teacher. She has her school email link to her phone so she can immediately answer so I don’t have to wait. I have that class every other day, so I don’t have to wait two days to find out. Those would be two days I lost that I could’ve been doing something. Now I can email her, she says yep you need to do that, I can do that and email it to her and it’s done within the night. I think that helps. Like I said, organizational, it helps that way.***WADE WINGLER: As a parent, one of the things that I observe with Katie being a person who uses an iPad at school and at home and all the time. She also has a cell phone that she texts so she is currently being interrupted. That you for all of us. We have jobs and lies and beep all the time. One of the concerns I’ve always had is how she going to manage that in school. I asked both the folks at school and Katie about that and here’s what they have to say.One of the powerful features of using an iPad in any setting, especially this is setting, is the collaborative nature. I know there are a lot of Google docs and apps that are being used to help students talk with one another. It must be iMessage that students are using to communicate with each other throughout the day. This is half an assistive technology question and half a selfish dad question. If the listeners have paid any attention, they will realize that my daughter Katie is a social, chatty, kind of kid. We talk about the fact that, for her, that kind of communication is a distraction and interrupts her throughout the day. Now we have to “out” Katie and decide is this something that’s fairly unique to her or our students in general and teachers and general having issues with the interruptions that come with the instant communication.BRAD FISHER: There is absolutely no doubt that this device is engaging. We’ve empowered the student with an incredible ability to communicate. Limiting that communication is an opportunity, and educational point, a learning opportunity. It depends on how you embrace it because there are technical things you can do to lockdown communications. You can go to the extremes of not having email, but is that really doing the student a service? How do you manage distractions in your life? I don’t think getting less of those as time goes on – and what a great life skill to teach a student then what’s appropriate, when it’s appropriate, and where it’s appropriate, and how much of it is appropriate. That being said, it is a challenge. It’s a new challenge that we are facing as part of the changing of society and the growing of the educational process. A-B-C’s, yep, math, yep, but also communications, speed. We are seeing the compression of expectations on everything. Everything is being compressed on when the expectations are. If you have that skill, what a life skill to have under your belt.***WADE WINGLER: As somebody who is a sophomore now and has use an iPad for a year, I think you’re describing a situation to my papa what is said “The ‘new’ has worn off now.” It’s not as new as it used to be. What advice would you give to yourself a year back? Let’s say you had a time machine and you could go back and whisper into your own ear now that you’ve had a chance to have this for a while. What advice would you give yourself?KATIE: He’s not worth emailing because it’s going to end badly anyway, so don’t worry about that. Also dad is going to read the messages so be careful what you say. You’re going to do badly on a lot of things because you’re not focused. Fixed that. But the iPad away right now, but it down, I see you. That was mostly my issue, not focusing enough on school, too much an email. Put the iPad down.WADE WINGLER: Is that a personal issue or is that an iPad issue?KATIE: What do you mean? If you’re asking if it is just me, no. Everyone, everywhere you look, people messaging, emailing, teachers saying put that away we are not doing that right now. Everyone is always socializing on it. Even people will be emailing me over and over, like, Katie, where are you? I’m like, dude, I’m actually trying to do school right now. I’ll talk to you later. It’s not just me. I’m not just saying that to get myself out of trouble. It’s not just me. It’s everyone.WADE WINGLER: Don’t you think that it’s there that that’s one of the lessons in life? Once you get out of high school, email is not going to go away. Distractions are going to go away. Those things are still going to be there. Isn’t this part of the lesson, is to learn how to manage and balance school with socialization with these very engaging, powerful communication tools you have?KATIE: Yeah, it is.WADE WINGLER: How is that going?KATIE: Better now that you’ve yelled at me a few times about it. I shut my message off, cut my emails down to just teachers. Yeah, I’m obviously going to talk to my friends throughout the day. Something comes up immediately, okay, yeah I got to email my friend but it’s because I’m not doing anything right now, or I have a couple of minutes of free time in class where the teacher is doing something. I’ll pull out my iPad and email Ashton and be like, hey, guess what I heard. Stuff like that. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t completely cut out everything. I didn’t completely stop, but I’ve deftly cut it down to a more reasonable amount and time that I’m not doing something important.***WADE WINGLER: What’s in the future for this project? A year from now, what will we be saying here is what happened in the subsequent year? Brad, as your kids move up into junior high and high school, where are we headed?BRAD FISHER: First of all, we went through a second deployment this year, much quicker. I want safe simpler but a different model for elementary. We’ve increased our presence, our electronic footprint within our corporation significantly. That model, since it is more of a teacher driven model and the iPads do not go home, it’s unique in that the challenges are more within the classroom and controlled by the teacher than the high school. I think probably our number one challenge is going to be actually leveraging them for education. How can the best be used to provide the type of education that we are trying to provide each student?***WADE WINGLER: 10 years from now, what’s going to replace the iPad? Will there still be iPads? Will people still be using them?KATIE: I see all kinds of stuff, like what’s going to come out 15 years from now. These palm-sized, looks like a pieces of glass and it’s a phone – which I don’t know how you don’t break that because I definitely would. It literally looks like a piece of glass this size of your palm. Everything is thinner and taller like the iPhone 5. Everything is more high-tech by every day that goes by. It’s definitely going to be very technologically advanced and however many years you said. Whether it’s iPads or not, that could definitely change.***WADE WINGLER: I think I can agree both with Katie as well as Lyle and Brad at Danville high school that iPads are here to stay, or at least something like them. I’m a kid who grew up watching the distance and thinking that by the year 2000 we would have flying cars and robots to clean our house. Sometimes I think that’s true another days I don’t. I think instead of that jet pack sort of mentality, we have changed our world to access a little bit and are trying to bring information to us. The fact that I can carry a smart phone in my pocket that gives me more access to information than we’ve had for generations is one of the hallmarks of that. Regardless of whether it’s an iPad or some sort of piece of glass that goes into a pocket, I think this kind of technology in the K-12 environment is here to stay.***WADE WINGLER: What’s the website address so that folks can find the iPad initiative here at Danville?BRAD FISHER: Our main school website is Within that there is a link that says iPad project.WADE WINGLER: Brad Fisher, Lyle Messinger, thanks so much for taking time out of your busy day and helping us look at what’s happened in the last year at the iPad initiative here at Danville.***WADE WINGLER: Before we finish up, we would like to remind everybody that you can check out our website at, you’ll find us on Twitter at INDATA Project, and we would love to hear feedback on our listener line about what you thought about this episode. You can give us a call at 317-721-7124. Leave us your feedback, questions, or comments about the show.***WADE WINGLER: One year later can we have learned a whole lot about how a school system can be impacted when they decide to replace their textbooks and other instructional things with iPads. I still think there are some things to be learned and I hope to check in again in the future with Danville high school to see how they are doing and my daughter as well. I think maybe my summation is it worked and there weren’t a lot of big changes that happened that caused problems and drama and those kinds of things. I guess in a good project, when the impact is a little less than dramatic, that’s probably a good thing.I would like to thank everybody who took time out of their days to talk with us about iPad high school a year later. Lyle Messinger as well as Brad Fisher and my daughter Katie. Thank you so much for that. We will let Katie close out the show.WADE WINGLER: Any shout outs to your friends that I can stick at the end of the show?KATIE: Hi, Ashton, Austin.WADE WINGLER: Who’s Austin?KATIE: You know who Austin is. Hi guys. That’s it. Don’t email me.Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterest1LinkedInEmailPrint RelatedATU291 – iPad High School Revisited – Part 2December 23, 2016In “Assistive Technology Update”ATU290 – iPad High School Revisited – Part 1December 16, 2016In “Assistive Technology Update”ATU126 – iPads as a Tool for People who are Older and Blind or Visually ImpairedOctober 25, 2013In “Assistive Technology Update”last_img read more

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