Administration,  iPod Trial,  pegeeks,  Technology in PE

iPod trial – Background

Technology is the way forward for practical subjects like PE, and for students who are becoming more familiar with using cameras and video and blogging as well as having easy access to mobile devices, it is only fitting that we use these forms of technology to enhance lessons and provide easy ways to let students actually ‘see’ and learn from their technique as the professionals in sport get to do.  The flood of devices onto the market has certainly allowed the prices to start to come down into a PE budget reach and with this in mind I approached my school to see if I could trial using some mobile technology in our PE lessons.

Our school already has 1:1 tablet use for MS and HS students but these are not at all good choices for use in the field.  I have found that you can adequately use tablets for viewing film or for reading up on technique or for submitting work but when it rains, or you drop your tablet or to have them lying around in the gym, it causes issues and it is time consuming and goes against the idea of being mobile and ready for action.

I worked on my Tech director and to my surprise after a year of completing some collaborative research on mobile technology (w some others from work, and being inspired from the PE Geeks workshop and ongoing twitter conversations) a new Tech trial was offered at work and after a lengthy application, I was successful in being granted money to buy 5 iPod touches, cases, a box for them to be safely stored in and some money to buy apps.

There are a few parts of the proposal to include here so that it is clear where the ideas and goals are that are going to drive this project, and to ensure that future blog posts adhere to the clear mission that guides this proposal and grant.  However, as this is a trial, it is also clear to state that as things are discovered or as they happen that they will also be included here!

Inspiration: What has inspired you to submit this proposal? What are your current limitations? What would you like to be able to do that you feel that you can’t?

  • After working on a collaborative goal last year, I was really inspired to work with ipad technology to see what we could do with this technology in terms of improving our student learning with more easy camera access through a variety of apps.
  • S and Mel bought Ipad3’s this year and have been doing personal trials in our classes with different apps and A has been using his android device to see what we could achieve with a teacher smart device and we have been delighted with some of our findings.
  • A, S and Mel went to Yokohama to the PE Geeks workshop with Jarrod Robinson and got to meet and talk with some other like minded PE teachers who come from a range of backgrounds (ipad schools; 1:1 schools; no tech schools) and it was great to find out more about what is on the market and what we could do with a small bunch of portable devices.
    • There was a strong consensus at the PE Geeks workshop that top schools in the region are going in the direction of portable technology being integrated into lessons – we feel if UNIS wants to be on that boat, we need to get involved and start catching up!
  • Mel wrote up a google document highlighting some of the ways that we could use PE/Tech in the MYP for assessment purposes, and this has been looked at and added to by a number of educators in the region and beyond.  It has also been taken to a recent MYP conference to share with other educators who are interested in good practice and sharing how PE and tech are moving forward.

Limitations as you see them:

  • Syncing up to the school network
  • How would we sync up multiple devices and how would we buy/access apps
  • Can we work with Apple itunes in our Fujitsu tablet school?
  • How would we share these resources amongst us as a department?
  • How would we share the videos?  Dropbox files work but do we need school ones etc.
  • Another issue would be to do with whether the school and PE dept. change their mindset about using student smart devices and having them be a working part of our lessons (and all the issues that go w this like network access; paying for data; insurance etc)

Goals of the pilot program: How do you hope this will affect students and student learning? How do you hope this will affect teachers and teaching methodology/pedagogy?

  • We would like to be more mobile and offer more visual feedback to kids in their lessons.
  • We would like to have easy feedback rather than tenuous camera/tv/tablet set ups and can cause issues outside
  • we like the idea of having an app that allows us to ‘reflect’ the screen on to the TV so that we don’t have to plug into anything and to have a pocket sized device for kids to use on the go
  • We hope to be able to use this for formative and summative assessment, to use it in classes for group work around performance to film/download to drop box and pick up as part of the assessment and then to add to blogs without cords, usb sticks and stress of the \\data\pe which you can only access from school
  • it would be great to keep lap records, to take photos of the finish of a race using real time, to collect data on HR
  • QR code readers and to make videos that we could add to QR codes for students to use in their lessons
  • Dance lessons for different groups to play their music without tablets etc. (would need to buy speakers) and to use programs like to get formative assessment done in lessons without need for tablets or paper.
  • involve parents of ECC students more in their child’s learning process by having data regularly uploaded on the same day as a learning experience specifically involving their child
  • Save time – reduce time spent on video recording and then downloading allowing for real-time feedback w large screento see work; collect work at end of lesson and share w students without cables/download time etc (last year Mel spent HOURS doing films/downloading films/creating screencasts for f’back on films – already this year I have saved myself time by using apps on ipad rather than video and can offer students viewing of their performance many times in a lesson, not just once after the lesson is done).
  • Safety: no cords around areas where we can trip over them; greater use of existing tech (TV’s and projectors can be easily used as part of this process)
  • PD: we can move our PE Dept forward as an upfront group, not a behind group – benefits to individuals and department.

Resources (Equipment, time, money, etc): What resources do you need in order for your project to begin? What do you estimate it would cost for these resources? How much time do you plan to take in testing and evaluating your project?

  • To get:
    • I would like to look at buying 4 or 5 ipod touches or ipad mini’s and an ipad3.  (
    • I think we would also need to buy about $50-100 worth of apps to make them work
      • Reflection app – possibly a few licenses at $15 each (links to 5 devices)
      • Coaches Eye – for each device
      • Collabcamera app – for ipads
      • TimeMotion
      • Dropboxes (free)
  • we would need access to the network or a data plan to access the internet and talk to each other
  • we may need some cases for the devices to keep them safe from the elements
  • we would need itunes accounts/syncing capabilities
  • possibly an AV adaptor to plug the ipad into the projector
  • box to keep them in

Evaluation of your goals: How do you plan to evaluate the success of your project? What might be some indicators of success? What kinds of evidence do you hope to collect (sample student work; images/videos of the project in action; feedback from students and/or parents; feedback from colleagues)

  • teacher observations on the effects of offering more readily accesible tech in classes (vs. not)
  • sample student work
  • Teacher feedback – saving of time (eg. Coaches Eye app allows for greater speed of screencasting etc. then video/download video/screencast/wait for upload etc)
  • Tech integration – ongoing dialogue with Tech dept on how this went
  • feedback from students on the use/f’back loop etc (student blogs, student feedback surveys etc)
  • Possibly we could make a short film of our uses – or we could invite Tech Director/others to see our work in action where possible
  • Sharing units written where tech integration is integral


So moving forward from here, the plan is to purchase one iPod and case and do some testing of some of the issues I am concerned about and for me to get to know the iPod for a week or two before buying a few more.  I am planning to use a QR or bar code reader, Coaches Eye and drop box to begin with on the iPod and use it in some classes.  These are all apps that I use on the iPad3 that I use in class, so this shouldn’t be an issue to start.

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