Meredith Kottler and Kathryn Leisz love technology. Both women are teachers at the Kinkaid school in Houston, Texas and both are iPad lovers, so it’s no surprise they were instrumental in bringing the tablet into their classrooms. When the teachers heard the school had technology funds available for iPads they quickly drafted a proposal to advocate for the purchase of the tablets.
“It took a couple of weeks to put it together and research why iPads are such great learning tools,” says Kottler, who taught Kindergarten at the time. “We did some research mainly around the fact that they’re so great for differentiation.”
It wasn’t just that Kottler and Leisz were iPad fans, it was that they saw the tablet as a tool that
catered to the strengths of multiple learning styles. No matter how a student learns best — whether by listening, seeing or touching — the iPad could provide for that. The tablets also allow students to be broken into small groups where they can use the devices to work independently on subject areas where they need extra help. “So if you have one group that needs to work on their letters and another that can read they can do different activities,” says Kottler.
Kottler and Leisz were confident their students would have the skills to use the tablets after witnessing the ease with which a much younger child took to a smartphone. “One thing we noticed was this child we are both friends with, who just turned two, was a wiz on his mother’s iPhone,” says Kottler. Following this experience, both women immediately recognized the value mobile technology could hold in the classroom.
Kinkaid’s iPad initiative is not a 1:1 program. The devices are for the Pre-K and Kindergarten students. There are twelve iPads all together and four per classroom, meaning students must