Classroom Allows Use of iPod

By: Giovanni Woods

Surely it does look like gone are the days when bringing electronic and mobile devices to school are prohibited. In fact, if you would remember, those days were considered to be the strictest when students could not bring their electronic gadgets with them to school. if they did and they were caught, it meant being brought to the principal’s office or the dean’s office to get reprimanded for not following the school’s rules.

In Ankeny, a school is actually allowing its students to bring their iPod Nano or iPod Mini to school. And yes, it is not a college set-up nor would it be a school that would teach the students to learn the entricities of the gadget. They would surely not be told how to fix iPods or learn about the iPod batteries and power.

The school is actually a middle school and it is known as the Northview Middle School of Ankeny. The students here are encouraged to bring their iPods with them. You see, this is primarily because the students here have reading disabilities and the iPods are going to assist the teachers and the educational instructors to help the children learn how to read.

The idea of allowing iPods to school and help these children with reading disabilities came to Sandi Rankin. Rankin is a computer teacher at the mentioned middle school. It was during one conference that she attended that the idea came flowing into her mind. The conference was about podcasting and the idea seemed to be developed there.

What teacher Rankin does is she puts all her tests in digital format. She reads them out loud in a digital recorder. After that, she brings the recorder to school. She asks for the iPods of each of her students. Then she downloads the information and the tests into the iPods. The gadgets would then be the instrument on letting the children know about the examinations that she has prepared for them. “It’s one of the best things they’ve ever had,” expresses Bill Taylor who is a ninth grader at the middle school.

The students that Rankin has to work with have a difficult time learning how to read on their own. They may be working harder than usual to be able to develop that skill but they were just not that lucky enough to do it the normal way. So that he would be able to understand the totality of what he is reading, he does need the guidance of a teacher and he also does need to hear the voice of his teacher as he goes through his lessons. That is where the iPod comes into being.

Not only are students like Taylor excited about the possibility of learning better. Even teachers are getting the thrill of helping out their students. Says one special education teacher, Candee Morrison, “We want the kids to be excited about school and like school. What a better way to help them like school then by doing things they know how to do?”

At present, the Northview Middle School already has acquired four iPod Nano along with new iPod Nano accessories which they are allowing students to use to learn better. These units are being used for French subjects as well as for computer lessons.

Author Resource:-> Giovanni Woods is a geeky entrepreneur who cannot work without his music buddy – the iPod Nano. He collects new iPod Nano accessories in the market through TopZone UK. He also loves to travel around Asia.

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