Saturday, June 16, 2012

ISTE 2012 > Algebra 24 X 7 Through the Use of iPads

Tuesday > 6/26/2012, 1:00pm–3:00pm, SDCC Halls DE Lobby , Table: 17

Loretta Asay, Clark County School District with Jennifer Andricopulos and Sherwood Jones

Give algebra students iPads to replace textbooks? Learn how algebra becomes engaging with digital age technology and an app that replaces the traditional textbook.  (Contains Commercial Content)


Purpose & Objectives

Participants will become familiar with the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt algebra app, FUSE, and leave with lessons learned from implementing its use by 1150 students, each with their own iPad. We will also share how we remotely manage the District-owned iPads and configure them. As part of the presentation, participants will remotely join an algebra class using this technology.


Clark County School District has the largest deployment of the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt algebra app, FUSE, which is used on iPads. This interactive, video-rich app more than replaces a traditional textbook. It contains all of the pieces in a traditional textbook, but also includes simulations, interactive practice, over 400 videos, and other multimedia features. The app is licensed for six years, about the length of time we can typically use a traditional textbook. Built in to the program is online access for teachers to follow student time and progress in the various components.

 We use a 1:1 model. In this initiative, we provided an iPad and the HMH app for each algebra student in three comprehensive schools and one alternative school, nearly 1200 iPads. We manage the iPads remotely through a software solution, JAMF. Students keep the iPads for personal use for the entire school year and are expected to use them extensively in algebra class and may use them in other classes. Participants in this session will be introduced to the FUSE app and how it is used in classes. In addition, they will learn about how we overcame challenges related to infrastructure, classroom management, professional development, and deployment.

Through desktop video conferencing, we will visit a classroom to watch how the FUSE app is used in instruction. Because of time restrictions, we will virtually visit while the teacher is introducing a topic and having the students work through it.

We have found that students are surprisingly careful and respectful of the equipment. We believe this is a result of the students being encouraged to use the iPads personally beyond the algebra app. Students report that they actually enjoy the instruction. Records show that they access the video components frequently, and often more than once. This could not happen in a traditional classroom, where teenagers are reluctant to admit they need repetition. Less classroom time is being spent on whole group instruction, and teachers are learning to differentiate. We are looking forward to the results from an outside evaluation of this project and will have results from the first semester in time for the ISTE conference.


I.  Introduction to the FUSE app – 10 minutes
a. Features
b. Licensing (briefly)
c. Professional development
II. Deploying iPads and management – 10 minutes
a. Parent/student agreements
b. Managing iPads remotely
c. Infrastructure needs and solutions
III. Virtual visit to algebra classroom – 20 minutes
IV. Preliminary results and Q & A – 10 minutes
a. Student attitudes
b. Teacher behaviors
c. Student achievement

Supporting Research

There are few studies yet of the efficacy of either electronic textbooks or handhelds. Much of the literature describes the impact of electronic texbooks or eBooks. (See for example, Tees, T. (2010). Ereaders in academic libraries: A literature review. Australian Library Journal, 59(4), 180-186.) One study of electronic textbooks, conducted in a higher education setting, found that students enjoyed using the electronic versions more than the traditional textbooks, but no impact on learning was found [Weisberg, M. (2011). Student attitudes and behaviors towards digital textbooks. Publishing Research Quarterly, 27(2), 188-196.] One study, again on electronic text but with younger children, found that adults preferred traditional books, while children were evenly split in their preference [Maynard, S. (2010). The impact of e-Books on young children’s reading habits. Publishing Research Quarterly, 26(4), 236-248.].

Empirical Education, Inc., as of the submission deadline, has not yet released publicly the results of its year-long study of the use of the FUSE app by 400 students in five California school districts. Preliminary discussions with the researchers have led us to believe that student attitudes towards math improved and their algebra achievement increased dramatically. Empirical Education will continue their research with our initiative. Thus we hope to contribute robust empirical research on a specific iPad app and electronic textbook.

Presenter Background

Loretta Asay

Coordinator, Instructional Technology and Innovative Programs
Curriculum and Professional Development Division
Clark County School District, Las Vegas, NV
Currently working on dissertation for PhD in Educational Psychology, UNLV

Led several successful technology integration initiatives, including deployment and ongoing professional development, with tools such as SMART Boards, tablets, laptops, iPods, and classroom response systems. One project, specifically, provided ongoing training for algebra teachers on the use of their interactive whiteboards.

Led a statewide, two-year online professional development project for the State of Nevada
Variety of publications in both lay and research journals

Experience presenting to a variety of technical and lay audiences

Jennifer Andricopulos

Coordinator, Technology and Information Systems Service Division
Clark County School District, Las Vegas, NV
Bachelor’s degree in Management Information Systems, UNLV

14 years experience in the technology field, she has worked on a help desk, supported Windows and Apple desktops, server administration and support, and software licensing. She has served as project lead on many technology initiatives. One project involved the deployment of a districtwide parent communication system.

Sherwood Jones

Project Facilitator, Curriculum and Professional Development Division
Clark County School District
Led two-year formative assessment project with classroom response systems
Currently working on doctorate in educational technology
Supports the classroom teachers and technologists in the iPads in Algebra project
Has presented to a variety of audience, including virtual audiences

Source Available At 


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.