Technology is everywhere and in one school, teachers find iPads help them provide math support to students.
The iPads appear to make little difference to second graders, but research at Miller Elementary School in the Bend-Pine School district showed that there was a tremendous difference for the teachers.
Rachael Schuetz, a former teacher at Miller Elementary and an nstructor in OSU-Cascade’s teacher education program decided to measure the impact of iPads on actual learning. She randomly assigned 85 students into two groups. One group used paper worksheets, and the other used iPads and the IXL app to practice math. After four weeks of doing this daily for 25 minutes, they switched.
After being tested at the beginning, middle, and end of the eight week period, students were asked to rate how much they were nterested in math. The rates were about the same between the paper worksheets and iPads.
However, for teachers, the results were different. The iPad software for math interacted with the student, telling them immediately if they got the problem right. The app provided a clue if they got it wrong for the next time. With paper worksheets, students had to wait for feedback from teachers, and kept working, sometimes achieving the wrong answers.
“Providing differentiation was quite challenging. This was an experience shared by all the teachers in my focus group,” said Schuetz.