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Developing Digital Lessons

There are lots of digital, out-of-the-box ways to enhance learning.

Think Beyond Term Papers

Apple’s wide range of easy-to-use media tools gives students unique new ways to illustrate that they’ve mastered class material. Consider assigning students nontraditional papers for language arts, history, and similar classes. Instead of writing a paper, students could make a documentary using iMovie or create a website or graphic-rich paper using iWeb or Pages. Or students could develop spoken word projects that are recorded using GarageBand that can then be included in a class or school podcast.

Use iLife and iWork Lesson Plans from Apple

If you can’t think of easy or relevant ways to use the Apple iLife applications (iMovie, iDVD, iPhoto, GarageBand, iTunes, and iWeb) or iWork suite (including Keynote and Pages for developing presentations and text/graphic layouts), check out the lesson plans that Apple provides free to educators. These plans cover a wide variety of subjects and age groups and can serve as lessons in their own right or as jumping-off points for your own ideas.

Use Apple’s Digital Learning Series

Apple provides packages of software for specific grade levels and subjects called the Apple Digital Learning Series. These packages include projects, learning applications and games, and other resources that can help you teach specific material.

Explore Freeware and Shareware Learning Tools

There are lots of commercial learning tools out there, including the ones in Apple’s Digital Learning Server. There are also a lot of free and low-cost program options that can be found online. Thy are well worth exploring by all educators, but are particularly helpful if your school has limited resources and cannot afford to spend much on commercial tools. Check out sites such as The Free Mac Classroom and VersionTracker’s Mac Education listing.

Use Apple’s Online Seminars

Apple provides many online seminars for learning about Macs and many Apple-branded applications. These free seminars can be a great way to teach students how to use different technologies. They are perfect as self-guided study programs for extra credit as well as part of a class curriculum.

Check Out Apple’s Mac@Work Stories

Apple’s website now includes a Mac@Work section, which illustrates the many diverse real-world ways that Macs are used in areas ranging from science to creative arts to technical work. The stories found there can help you draw connections between a specific class and the computers that you are using.

Subscribe to the Apple Learning Interchange

The Apple Learning Interchange is a relatively new feature of Apple’s education website. It contains project and lesson plan ideas developed by Apple and educators, provides discussion forums dedicated to Macs in the classroom, and includes other information and tips. It is a great resource for sharing ideas, information, and for asking questions.

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