It did not take long to find a perfect app for aggregating feeds for students and packaging them into a user-friendly format on the iPad. That app would be Pulse. It is not as visually appealing as Flipboard and is not really a "magazine", but it is very useful for putting TONS of learning content in one place for students to read, evaluate, react to, share, etc. This is going to solve a big "management" issue for me while using two iOS shared devices- pointing the students in the direction they needed to go! Pulse pulls in your Google Reader content feeds and allows you to place them on different pages so that they can be read, watched, listened to, etc. FROM ALL ONE PLACE. From a teaching standpoint, the fewer the clicks it takes a student to get to the learning , the better! There are no distractions... just CATEGORIES & CONTENT. Sweet!
- First, make sure you have a Google Reader account set up. I use a "classroom" Google account to keep my personal feeds, email & Docs separate. (Watch this 1 min. summary of Google Reader if you need to.) At this time Pulse appears to only support Google Reader.
- Second, (and this was the fun part for me) find some awesome material that you want your students to interact with & check if it has an RSS feed associated with it. Later I will list the feeds which I have subscribed to for my 4th graders. Here is an example of some regularly updated, kid-friendly content on Sports Illustrated for Kids with a link to the RSS feed.
- Next, grab the RSS link/URL & paste it into Google Reader (see step 1 picture). Note that there are add-ons for Firefox and Google Chrome that will display an RSS icon in your address bar whenever there is a feed for the site you are on.
How have you used RSS in your classroom? What RSS reader apps for the iPad are you using for student use? What feeds do you subscribe to? What are some lessons or projects that have benefitted from the availability of RSS in your class? I welcome your feedback!