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Every day the share of mobile Internet and the number of users of mobile devices are increasing. Such changes are quite conditioned. Nowadays everyone is striving for convenience and mobility in all spheres of life. However, mobile devices would not bring so much benefit without special add – ons-mobile applications. The importance of mobile applications in education is growing, and the main reason for this is the opportunities they provide: joint work of students on tasks during the lesson and in extracurricular activities, file exchange, organization of distance learning and interaction with parents.
Today a lot of people have access to a connected mobile device. Every person has access to the Internet from a computer and a mobile device. Mobile technology is changing the way we live and it is starting to change the way we learn. The use of portable computing devices (such as IPADS, laptops, tablet PCs, PDAs and smart phones) with wireless networks enables mobility and mobile learning, allowing teaching and learning extend to spaces beyond the traditional classroom.
Few years ago our school received two mobile classes “Apple". Apple's mobile class based on iPod media players is a unique mobile solution that allows you to deploy a language lab in a matter of minutes in any audience and does not require expensive communications. It was my class that became the first lucky users; we got about 25 mobile iPod devices. At the time of admission, each of the devices already had programs and applications for learning English and additional equipment .This greatly increased the desire of our students to learn English, because this learning becomes more interesting, you can work with certain applications that you need. Students have the opportunity to learn a foreign language on their own. Applications embedded in the iPod, make it possible to study grammar separately, listen to English literature for developing hearing and understanding spoken or solving listening tasks. Any student who has ever used such a device can say that such training is much easier and more interesting than the ordinary teaching.
Mobile learning involves the use of mobile technologies, either alone or in combination with other information and communication technologies, in order to learn anytime and anywhere. Learning can take many forms: we can use mobile devices to access educational resources, communicate with our friends, teachers and relatives, or create content, both inside and outside of classrooms. Mobile learning also makes easier communication between schools and families. Our teachers and parents can discuss school problems on-line via Skype or in the special forum.
Let's focus on specific forms and methods of implementation of mobile technologies in the educational process.
The first (and most common) way is to use a mobile phone as a means of access to the global network. It is possible to organize access to specialized sites containing electronic training courses, tests, practical tasks and additional training materials (drawings, photos, audio and video files). It is also possible to exchange e-mail for educational purposes and instant messaging programs as “Viber”, “What’s Up?” versions which exist for mobile phones. Thus, at all stages of training, there are many opportunities for the transfer of information materials to the student, as well as control of the entire learning process and help in solving problems.
The second way of possible use of mobile phones for training is the use of special programs for cell phone platforms that are able to open and view office program files, such as Office Word, Power point, Excel. Thus, having such files in the memory of the mobile phone that contain training information, you can view their versions, adapted specifically for the phone screen, with convenient scrollbars, suitable font and user-friendly interface. Also, the source of information can serve as video and audio files, programs, players for which are in each phone of the last years of release. Especially valuable is this opportunity for those who want to learn foreign languages – there are a huge variety of audio courses and audiobooks, including files of different formats and lengths.
Another way to use mobile phones or IPods for learning is to use specialized e-textbooks and courses that are adapted to be viewed and run on students ' mobile phones. In our IPods we have special program which allow us to read a lot of e-books during the lessons.
It is also possible to implement training programs in the game shell, using the graphics capabilities of phones, but the implementation of such applications is quite complex and time – consuming process. As a result, the writing of electronic textbooks and subject testing programs for mobile phones seems to be a more promising direction. There are a huge number of special applications for mobile phones, such as calculators of varying degrees of complexity (simple, scientific), office programs for mobile phones, applications containing various tests with answers (for example, for psychologists), etc.
To date, the most common and affordable are Apple's iPhone smartphones and smartphones on the Android mobile platform, which differ from conventional mobile phones with a sufficiently developed operating system. Installation of additional applications can significantly improve the functionality of smartphones compared to conventional mobile phones.
The importance of mobile applications for education is growing not only because of their accessibility and attractiveness in terms of new technologies, but also because of the opportunities they provide. Currently, a huge number of mobile applications, starting with children's ABC and ending with paid applications for self-study. My favorite application, on the basis of which our mobile learning on iPod takes place at school, is called LINGUALEO. It is very convenient and effective, because it combines both serious methods of study and the game. Each of the techniques is divided into levels of training from beginner to advanced user. This application we use for about a year and many of our students began to receive some necessary and additional knowledge of English. I make a list of the most popular applications among my friends and classmates:
1. Microsoft Applications (Word, Excel, Power Point, OneNote, OneDrive).
Convenient mobile versions that allow you to process information, even when there is no computer at hand.
2. Google apps (Drive, Mail, Play Market, Google Maps, Google Earth).
Quick access to your files, easy interface to download the necessary applications. Interactive satellite maps online. Virtual globe
3. Online library (Aldebaran, Samolet, Litres, Liter etc.)
On some resources it is possible to download or read a book online, a large selection of works in various genres.
A free, cross-platform dynamic math program for all levels of education, including geometry, algebra, tables, graphs, statistics, and arithmetic, in one easy-to-use package.
5.Applications for learning English (Duolingo, Lingualeo, Polyglot, Puzzle English, Tutorial in English. They give the opportunity to learn English on their own.
Advantages and disadvantages of using mobile applications.
When implementing any innovation, you need to be prepared for the negative side, so let's consider both the undoubted advantages and negative aspects of mobile learning. Thus, the undoubted advantages of using mobile devices and technologies in the educational process of the school are: quick access to authentic educational and reference resources and programs at any time and in any place; constant feedback from the teacher and the educational community; taking into account the individual characteristics of the student - diagnosis of learning problems.
The negative aspects of mobile learning in the first place should be attributed to the complexity is not so much technical and financial, as administrative and organizational nature. Firstly, it is difficult to convince both teachers and the administration of schools that this form of training helps to optimize the educational process, because the tasks are carried out on devices (phones), which are usually prohibited in schools and universities for use in the classroom.
In conclusion, I would like to say that mobile applications greatly facilitate learning and increasingly show the desire of students to education. The use of mobile applications in the learning process is one of the ways to increase the motivation of learning. Mobile applications help to realize the main human needs-communication, education, self-realization. The introduction of mobile applications in the educational process is designed to improve the efficiency of lessons, free the teacher from routine work, as well as to diversify the feedback forms.
How to make e — learning understandable" - Michael Allen.
E-learning opportunities in development- I.N. Meshcheryakova.
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