Too often teachers talk about limited budgets and not being able to do certain activities because of an inability to gather funds. Well this might not apply to all schools but it certainly applies to mine which is a small country school with only 1 video camcorder and a few digital cameras for use within our classes. I recently set an activity in which we would be using the camcorders and digital cameras to record the human impacts evident at our local lake. Immediately I knew there would be a serious engagement problem with the class of 17 as it would be impossible for all to be involved in the activity. So I got permission from the principal, in our anti mobile phone school, to allow the students to bring in and use their mobile phones within the session. The truth is I didn’t need to specify that they should bring them in as they already had them hidden away in their pockets.
Need I say the engagement level was simply incredible which was a real positive for this group of students and didn’t they excel, capturing some simply stunning and informative photography. We then sent the pics to my computer via bluetooth and we used within a voicethread. This gets me excited as with a standard mobile phone you could now effectively have;
- A class set of voice recorders
- A class set of MP3 payers
- A class set of Video Cameras & Digital Cameras
- etc etc
So what was the cost of this activity you ask? zero, nothing, nada. Our students already have these devices so there is rarely no outlay as opposed to a standard textbook or add on technologies. So lets embrace mobile phone technology in our schools, it just may be the solution to our budget problems. It sure will be in my school….