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Teaching the Last Backpack Generation

Teaching the Last Backpack Generation
A Mobile Technology Handbook for Secondary Educators

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216 pages | Corwin
Don’t just know how to use mobile technology. Know how to use it to transform learning. This refreshingly easy-to-use workbook shows how to make mobile devices a natural part of lessons, no matter the content. Discover practical device management skillsfun strategies students will love, and helpful resources to extend professional learning.
Thanks to the Educators
About the Authors

How to Use This Workbook

Glossary of Terms

Current Research on Mobile Technology

Research Reports

1. The Basics of Teaching With Technology
Classroom Management Strategies

Choosing a Learning Management System (LMS)

Managing Multiple Devices in the Classroom

Professional Development Reminders

2. The Basics of Devices
Mobile Devices

The Device Settings: Get Started Here

Using the Accessibility Features of iOS

Using the Restrictions Features of iOS

Projecting Your Device

The Mobile Device as an Interactive Whiteboard

Student Response Systems and Backchannel Discussions

3. Strategies for the Classroom
Simple-to-Use Strategies Sheets

Strategy 1: How to Use Photos

Strategy 2: How to Use Texting

Strategy 3: How to Use Video

Strategy 4: How to Use QR, AR, and Other Scannable Technology

Strategy 5: How to Use Gaming

Strategy 6: How to Use Google

Strategy 7: How to Use Google Docs

Strategy 8: How to Use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Google Earth

Strategy 9: How to Use the Cloud

Strategy 10: How to Use Digital Assistants (Such as Siri)

Strategy 11: How to Use Twitter

Strategy 12: Supporting Students With Special Needs

Strategy 13: Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Strategy 14: Read-Aloud Testing

Strategy 15: Accessible Educational Materials (AEM)

Strategy 16: A Few Other Random Ideas

4. Lesson Planning
How to Use the Lesson Plan Templates

Lesson Plan Samples

Lesson Plan Templates

Week 1 Professional Development

Week 2 Professional Development

Week 3 Professional Development

Week 4 Professional Development

Week 5 Professional Development

App Warehouses

Technology/Integration Review Tools

Twitter Chats and People to Follow

Video Warehouses

Website Warehouses

Quotes to Keep in Mind



"In the 21st Century world of education, technology continues to evolve, creating and changing not only the tools for learning, but also the methodology and pedagogy that must accompany that change. The authors of Teaching the Last Backpack Generation have presented a common sense, practical and easy to follow, hands-on approach providing educators the necessary means to stay relevant in a developing mobile environment for learning."

Tom Whitby, Consultant
Corwin Author, The Relevant Educator

"As students and learning continue to go mobile, it is important for educators to be equipped with the best resources and information to engage this new generation of learners. This text offers practical ideas, lessons, and more that will help educators anywhere prepare their classrooms to be mobile ready." 

Steven W. Anderson, Author of The Relevant Educator and Content Curation

"This is a well thought out, practical guide on tech integration for teachers at all levels of the spectrum. It gives flexible considerations and planning points for individuals on solo dives or for small/large groups redesigning their learning spaces and approaches to teaching."

Derek L. McCoy, Principal
Spring Lake Middle School, 2014 NASSP Digital Principal of the Year

"It is difficult to keep up with the ever-growing list of available technology tools. The authors present a comprehensive guide that will help any educator find the best tools to ensure the purposeful integration of technology in the classroom."

Eric Sheninger, Author of Digital Leadership and International Speaker
Senior Fellow, International Center for Leadership in Education

"Teaching the Last Backpack Generation provides a framework of implementation for current technologies and tools. This practical workbook is easy to digest, and more importantly, easy to put into action as teachers upgrade their teaching and learning practices."

Adam Bellow, Founder and CEO

"This is an extraordinary example of how “one book fits all.”  Here is one of the richest, most comprehensive and user-friendly collections of practical ideas, strategies and tips for using technology to reach and teach today’s students.  It is fully packed with timesaving tools for all secondary teachers and a wealth of ways to use technology to motivate students and ensure their active involvement in learning. Whether you are a beginning or accomplished tech user, and regardless of the subject you teach, this valuable resource will open up multiple, innovative ways to give your students voice and choice in their learning. While technology will continue to change, this book – with its emphasis on ways to use technology to maximize student involvement and learning – will be invaluable for many, many years to come."

Dr. Boyce Heidenreich, Former Principal and Administrator

"This is a practical workbook for teachers integrating mobile technology in classrooms.  This book should be within reach of every teacher as they plan to make lessons more engaging for today's students."

Andy L. Carpenter, Assistant Principal, Curriculum & Instruction
Louis Pizitz Middle School

"Technological tools are rapidly changing.  Newer, better, and faster are all the new norms. This book provides links, URLs and QR codes to support pages with updates and ideas for evaluating and using new tech releases.   With a focus on teaching 21st century skills, the strategies presented in this workbook not only strengthen a student’s ability to engage technology, but also to problem solve through creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking. This book is an essential item for the successful integration of technology, PBL, and soft skill acquisition. Teaching the Last Backpack Generation is a catalyst for good teaching and learning!"

Terry L. Roller, Director of High School Education
Tuscaloosa City Schools

"This is an essential, easy-to-use resource for all secondary teachers who are ready to embrace using mobile technology in their classroom instruction.  From marvelous management tips, to super strategies for using the most common classroom technology tools, to simple lesson planning guides, and more, this book has everything you need to get started and keep growing.  I love the pep talks, advice, and tips scattered throughout book, as well as the companion website that I can use to keep me updated on the latest technology tools."

Kathleen Kryza, Author and International Educational Consultant

"This workbook is a practical, easy-to-use resource and is perfect for mobile technology integration strategies across all content areas.  With schools now focused on BYOD policies, every teacher should have a copy of this workbook sitting on their desk."

Susan Fitzell, Speaker, Writer, and Educational Consultant

Sample Materials & Chapters


Zachary M. Walker

Dr. Zachary Walker is an Associate Professor with the University College London Institute of Education (IOE) and author of Teaching the Last Backpack Generation.  Zachary serves as the Academic Head of Learning and Teaching for the Department of Psychology and Human Development and leads the Masters in Special Education and Inclusive Education (MASIE) and Masters in International Leadership in Inclusive Education (MAILIE) graduate programs at IOE.  He was named an Emerging Scholar by Think College (2012), a Millennium Milestone Maker by the World Academy for the Future of Women (2015), was awarded the John Cheung Award for the... More About Author

Kara Rosenblatt

Kara Rosenblatt is an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Dr. Rosenblatt obtained her master’s degree in Special Education, Learning Disabilities, and Behavior Disorders in 2001 from Florida State University and her doctoral degree in Exceptional Education in 2009 from the University of Central Florida. In her current role, Dr. Rosenblatt teaches undergraduate and graduate level special education courses.In addition to her teaching experience in higher education, Dr. Rosenblatt has experience working within state agencies, collaborating with special education personnel and agencies to coordinate training... More About Author

Don McMahon

Don McMahon is an Assistant Professor of Special Education Technology at Washington State University in Pullman, WA.   Don received his Doctorate in Education from the Special Education Ph.D. program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.    In addition to his doctoral work, Don attended the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Universal Design for Learning Summer Institute.  His research involves increasing the use of Universal Design for Leaning principles in education, using mobile devices to increase achievement for students with disabilities, and exploring the impact of augmented reality as an... More About Author

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