3 ways to integrate the versatile website and iPad app Haiku Deck into the classroom.  Learn how to get students started and some tips for classroom use.

3 ways to integrate the free web app Haiku Deck into the classroom

We used Haiku Deck to make a few different presentations over the last 2 weeks and the more we use it, the more ideas I have about integrating this quick and easy presentation app into our day. Haiku Deck is both an iOS app and a website.

First, I used our classroom Google Account gmail and password to make a free account.  By using the same account, all of our presentations, or “decks” are saved in one place.  Haiku Deck now offers Haiku Deck Classroom account feature for a small fee that is worth it if you plan to use this app and website more than one a year or want to integrate your decks with Google Classroom.  They have a free trial offer that I highly recommend!

The beauty of the program is its simplicity.  You type words, add pictures from Haiku Deck’s integrated image search (or upload your own), and adjust the layout of the text.

1. Make a Haiku Deck together as a class to display class rules and procedures.

When working as a group, you can assign each student a slide.  We use the iPad and each student would create their slide than pass it to the next students.  This work flow is perfect for classrooms with just 1 iPad since it can be set up in a center.  Since the slide only takes a minute to create, you can have students working on this whenever it fits into your day.  I taught a lesson about commenting on KidBlog and as the students were working on their KidBlogs, I had one student at a time create their slides.  The result is below:

 Commenting Do’s and Don’ts

As you see in the posted example, the images are full size and the text is limited.  This is on purpose as Haiku Deck is all about “keep it simple, keep it beautiful, keep it fun,” a mantra mentioned multiple times on their blog and website alongside useful tutorials and ideas.  Images are sourced directly from the text you type in.

One note about pictures – the app comes with a 12+ age recommendation.  While there is a filter on the images, Haiku Deck cannot control how photographers tag their images.  I have worked around this by approving student text before they can make decks and also by checking images prior.  I also have students choose a picture from the first 5 choices since in my experimenting, the odd inappropriate picture tended to be very far down the scroll bar.  Even then, a questionable picture was only found once out of all of my searching and scrolling – similar to Google Images with a safe filter.  Either way, I would not simply hand the iPad to the children and instruct them to make a deck without any teacher input – I do not even do that on Kidblog!

2. Use Haiku Deck during guided reading to keep track of vocabulary words.

Students are responsible for keeping a list of “unknown” words in the books they are reading.  Prior to using Haiku Deck, we would only look the word up in the dictionary or use context clues when we met as a group.  Now we keep a running deck of words from the story.  We enter the word and the definition and quickly select a picture that fits.  We then have a slideshow of the words from the novel that we can reference.  It has motivated the students to keep an eye out for those interesting words.

Click here for our running glossary haiku deck }

The ease of Haiku Deck makes it the perfect pass-and-play app for a one iPad classroom. Since each slide takes approximately a minute to create, students can enter in their information quickly and hand the iPad to the next student.  Both of the decks I have shared above were created this way.

I have adapted this activity so that students can each keep their own growing presentation of words all year long on either the iPad or the PC.  My Vocabulary Guide to Haiku Deck includes student pages and kid-friendly direction sheets.  I use the URL of each deck to make a QR code that I glue to each students’ reading notebook.  During Reading Workshop, students can can the QR code to visit and edit their decks when they need to add additional words.

3. Finally, students can use Haiku Deck the way it was originally intended – to present!

Since the app has an in-app or in-site image search, it would work great for science and social studies presentations.  However, you can also add your own images, so students could draw or take photos of things as well.  Haiku Deck limits the amount of text so it would be a good way to practice giving a presentation from the computer screen, too.

How have you used Haiku Deck?

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