Apps the way forward: My Top Apps of the Month

Since getting our department iPad we have been testing out a range of apps. I have already posted about the use of Comic Life, Socrative and Coaches Eye, but here is a quick fire list of our favourite apps this term.

1. Easy Portfolio

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This app is the first in a line of useful apps from thepegeek apps.
Easy portfolio allows you to make groups and set up a virtual portfolio of evidence for each individual student. You an add video, image, audio, notes, URL and documents.
Ideal for both practical and theory elements of PE. We now have videos of each student performing in each activity, together with teacher documentation of the assessments and pictures of any work completed, all in one place!

2. Easy Assessment

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The next step for the PEgeek team. Easy assessment allows you to set up rubrics and criteria that allow you to track and record assessments. This has been set up to record our GCSE final practical marks as well as monitor exam practice question performance and record KS3 knowledge PBL home work.
Easy to use; students can add in their own scores and once again all the mediums of video, audio etc can be added just as in easy portfolio.

3. Pick Me is a great app for questioning whether in the classroom, sports hall or on the field.

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You can upload your class lists manually or by importing from Dropbox to save time. The app selects a student to answer your question. You can the record whether that student got the question correct or not using the green ‘thumb up’ and red ‘thumb down’. The programme allows you to choose whether that student remains in the hat for further questions or is taken out as they have already answered. This allows you to ensure you have not always got the same students answering questions.
A the end of the session it gives a count up of their question success.
We have found this great for revision purposes and allowed students to visually track their successes in a lesson and across a number of lessons.

For the PE teachers among us the infamous cross country season is upon us where we run on mass around the fields looking to assess cardiovascular endurance, race tactics, personal target setting and resilience amongst other things. App number 4 allows us to quickly time and record every students time in a cross country / swimming/ athletics race.

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Webscorer is our new god!
It times the race, allows you to pre populate the names of race runners or add them afterwards. Each time a runner comes in you press the stopcock which gives you their split. The results can also go live on webscorers web page so students can go and check out their performances at a later date. and a tweet to the link never hurts!

5. A great complimentary app to this is PBGo which allows you to log PB times for any swimming or athletic events (including jumps and throws). It allows each student to create a PB card that records event, time, venue and date to track progress in cracking their PBs. It even allows them to add a mugshot of themselves!

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This virtual PB card is being used with GCSE students to track their cross country running. It can give you top 5 times over the chosen distance. This evidence can then be updated to Easy Portfolio as their personal evidence!! Can’t wait to roll it out with more groups.

‘hAPPy APPin’ from EV Sport

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Socrative sets the standard for Solo Stations

For those of you looking for an engaging app… Socrative is your answer. It can be accessed on iPads or via the Internet on computers, and allows students to take part in interactive questioning; with instant feedback for both them and you. This is the icon you are looking for

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On this occasion I used socrative as a starter and evaluation tool to assess which solo station students should start at within the lesson. As part of my planning I had pre set a multiple choice quiz, reflective of a unistructural level, asking about indifferent methods of training. Students logged into my ‘room’ and began to answer the questions at teacher led pace – each time I received feedback that all students had answered.

Here is a preview of the Socrative home screen that displays all the possible set-ups you can run.

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At the end of the starter I had a clear picture of what methods of training students had understood in from the practical lessons proceeding this lesson.

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This is where our solo station journey began…
All students who had got all the questions correct started the lesson at station 2. .

Those students who had not answered all the questions correctly started the journey at station 1. This was set up as a teach station where students could revisit the specific area of training methods where their mistake had been.
On this table there were a range of sources available to suit a range of student learning styles.
* textbooks for those who wished to read information on specific training methods.
* sheets with pictures and QR codes linked to videos that could be viewed using the ipad.
* teacher input / teaching.

When they felt comfortable that their understanding in this area had improved they went back to the starter activity – this time answering the question at their own pace (a setting within the app). Only one student had to revisit station 1 twice before moving on to station 2.

At station 2 Activities and questions were pitched at a multistructural level and contained practice exam questions using the verb describe.

At station 2 their was a self assessment sheet linked to the exam questions that consolidated the learning at this station.

Station 3 allowed students to progress to relational thinking, where the ideas and knowledge generated at both the uni and multistructural stations had to be related to a specific sport.

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This writing frame allowed thinking to develop, while acting as a stepping stone for an extended writing piece linked to a BTEC Sport assignment meeting assessment objective P2 in Module 1

‘Describe 3 different fitness training methods used to achieve excellence in a selected sport’

The plenary for the lesson once again used socrative as an exit ticket was set up and all students must complete this task before leaving the room.

The solo stations allowed students to build and expand their knowledge at their own pace, feeling success and progression as they moved through the stations and the different activities. I feel the set up of these stations encouraged students to be independent, and in someways resilient (especially those who started at station 1) and also resulted in more work being completed.

Get the fat controller out and get Thomas the tank and friends flying from station to station!! Whoo whoo!!!