Have a relatively recent tablet of your own and reflect on its pedagogical & didactic uses.

Whether your school board/centre bought it for you or you purchased your tablet yourself doesn’t really matter. What’s important for a 21st teacher is to have ubiquitous access to this paradigm-shifting tool. Looking up information whenever you need it, sharing videos on the spot with friends/family/colleagues, playing games, surfing, reading, taking pictures, communicating, exploring the world using a tablet (iPad, Android, Surface, etc.) is a must-have experience to truly understand its potential in a classroom.

You don’t need to go top-of-the-line, but the best you can afford is often a better long-term investment than some of the cheaper models. Whether you go for an Apple, Google, Samsung, Sony or other product, simply make sure you have two good quality cameras, at least 32 Go of memory, a size you are comfortable with and that the device is relatively recent. You can get some interesting second-hand devices, but the cost of new ones is often not significantly higher.

In order to truly benefit from the advantages of this tablet, it almost goes without saying, you should have WiFi at home. If your device is on loan from your school board, be sure to have administratives privileges that allow you to install whatever apps you see fit.

Word of advice: don’t give in to app atacks! Access to information in all its forms is perhaps of much greater pedagogical relevance than any app. The idea is not to do electronically what was done with pen and paper before, but to take advantage of connectivity (e.g. Twitter for your PD), of the wealth of multimedia information (e.g. Wikipedia and Google) and of curation tools (e.g. Pinterest) that traditional media could not offer.

After having your tablet for a while, reflect on how you use it? Is this what you offer your students? Is this the way people use this technology in their everyday and working lives? Are you helping bridging the gap between school and the real world?


The Tablet-PD Deal, Marc-André Lalande, 6:01