Creativity is a natural extension of our enthusiasm.-Earl Nightingale
One of the great things about teaching young children is their ability to entertain themselves with just about anything. Given a stick, it becomes a bat, a spear, a magic wand…their imagination has no limits. My students role play, create, draw, paint, and pretend. When is the last time you did any of those things? Grown-ups don’t do those things right? That’s for kids. When did we lose our ability to create?
School systems are inherently driven by standardization. Students are jumping through pre-designed hoops and creativity seems to be a side dish in the entree-heavy school system. It seems to be overlooked that creativity can be a great intrinsic motivator. Creativity, if not nurtured, will take a nose-dive before a student leaves elementary school.
A great tool for the iPads is a suite of apps that help incorporate creativity into any content. The iLife suite includes iPhoto, iMovie, and GarageBand. iPhoto allows you to browse, edit, and share your favorite pictures. iPhoto can also create slide shows and books. iMovie allows you to turn video into movie trailers, tv news segments, and more. With travel maps in your video travelogues, everyone who watches comes along on the adventure. The drag and drop feature makes it easy to use. Garage Band allows you to “get your groove on”. You can use and edit existing music loops, or create your own using a variety of instruments. Even if you have never played any of these instruments before, you are able to create a masterpiece. Voice recordings are also available which you can then add to iMovie.
The iLife Suite gives students the power to create. Teachers often identify their main goals as helping children build cognitive and social skills. But the great engine that drives innovation and invention in society comes from people whose flame of creativity was kept alive in childhood.
Giving students freedom within a structure gives them a clear goal but also alternatives on how to get there. By incorporating creative tools into the curriculum, students can explore the depths of their inner artist.
Check out the iLife Suite and see the possibilities. Let freedom ring!
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2 thoughts on “Living the iLife: iPhoto, iMovie and Garage Band”
Kristi, I so agree! When we open that door to creativity our children never cease to amaze us! We are only use free apps on our iPads, but one of these is Maps. My students discovered this app on their own and loved using it, mostly to find their homes. One day as my class was being dismissed, one first grader turned to another and said, “Tomorrow I am going to San Juan Bautista and after that I think I will walk across the Golden Gate bridge.” The second student responded, “That sounds like fun! I’m going to visit the White House again. Maybe I’ll see Obama!” I (being my clueless self) reminded them that there was school the next day so their families probably wouldn’t be taking them on trips. (I didn’t even get into the fact that those places were pretty far.) My students looked very puzzled and very patiently explained to me, “Oh, we’ll be in school. We’ll use our iPads to go on these trips.” So, yes, when we give our students freedom to explore, they make discoveries that we haven’t even thought of.
An Open Door blog
I’m making a whole CD using GarageBand, a mic and a keyboard! Maybe when it’s done I could pass along a copy to you or someone using the ipad in the classroom to show young kids what you can do and how easy it is! Let me know if you’re interested in that!