Saturday, January 21, 2012

Keynote, Apple TV, Assessment

This week in Science, I wanted to assess my students understanding of planet characteristics. After highlighting Earth's unique characteristics for sustaining life, students had been studying the other planets, creating postcards, and nailing down the big ideas. So, it seemed like a great time for a quick assess.

In the past, to assess this I may have had a writing prompt, series of multiple choice questions, or maybe a chart of characteristics to fill in. Blech...right? That's my thinking too! I take a really cool topic and fizzle the excitement with those activities.

So, this time I used a Keynote slide show, the apple TV in the room, and dropbox. I wanted to give the students freedom in developing their own planet characteristic sorts. (I was hoping they would go beyond an inner and outer planet sort.) To accomplish this, I told the students that they would find a Solar System Sort Keynote presentation in the iPad dropbox.

I told them that it was incomplete, and I needed their help. I needed to show the next class 5 different ways to sort the planets. Each slide in the Keynote (after the title slide) had the planets all mixed up. Can they help?

Immediately, students were able to locate the Keynote and pull it up. They started by working independently, but then asked if they could share ideas. No problem, just make sure everyone can explain the sorts.

Students were doing a fantastic job within minutes! They were dragging the little planet pictures around, discussing characteristics, and helping each other with misconceptions. Some students were even adding text, pictures, and descriptions! Total teamwork and talking science!

After giving the students some work time, I started rotating around to the various students. I had great discussions, reinforced some solid ideas, and started having the students share through the projector.

(Can you tell the sort pattern here?)

It was as simple as mirroring the iPad to the Apple TV! When we wanted to switch people sharing, we just got the next iPad streaming. What a quick, easy way to share! The assessment was painless. I was able to reinforce and feel confident in my student's knowledge. Win, win!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


  1. Does your school pay for the dropbox account? Interested in doing that next year.

  2. I am currently utilizing the free account. You would be surprised just how much the students can submit to this one account. All my students send to this central account. :)

  3. Thank you for responding. How many GB is that? 2?

    1. I believe the free Dropbox account is 2GB. We haven't had problems with space this year. I imagine at the end of the year, after all students have transferred their projects to their e-portfolios, I will clean out the account. :)