Getting Started

Using Airplay Mirrioring on iOS 7.1

The way that Airplay Mirroring works on iOS 7.1 is slightly different than earlier versions of iOS. To show Silent Light with Airplay turn on mirroring before launching Silent Light. If you try and mirror after loading Silent Light it won't show your Apple TV as an option to mirror with.

Using Silent Light in a Lesson

Quality time with small groups or one on one with your students is invaluable to effective learning. I spend a lot of time working with small groups of learners, while the rest of my class is set up on independent or group learning tasks. Silent Light is designed to help you focus on the group you are with, rather than managing your classroom's noise level.

Here's how I use Silent Light my classroom:

  1. First of all, I negotiate with my whole class a suitable noise level (you can change the sensitivity by clicking the cog icon). The volume you expect from your classroom obviously depends on the tasks you've set for them.
  2. Set a target for how many points they'd like them to earn. There's a neat opportunity for some maths here: "If you earn a point every 5 minutes, and we're doing Math for an hour - what's the most points you could earn?".
  3. Negotiate with my class their incentive for earning enough points. For my class this is normally a game at the end of the day.
  4. I send my class off on their independent tasks so I can enjoy focused and quality time with my small groups! The first time you use Silent Light you might need to adjust the sensitivity to suit your personal preferences for noise level.

Where shall I put my device to run Silent Light?

Since the projectors in our classrooms have Apple TVs attached, getting Silent Light up on the screen is easy. We use AirPlay Mirroring to share the display of our iPhone or iPad with our learners. If you don't have an Apple TV you can use a display adapter for your iPad, or just place your iPad somewhere easy for the kids to see, like a shelf or on your whiteboard.

Remember that the volume of sound is relative; the closer you are to someone or something making a noise, the louder it is. Because of this, where you place the device running Silent Light matters. If you have your iPad or iPhone on the mat where you are working with a group then it will detect your noise rather than the ambient noise of the classroom. I leave my iPhone at the front of my classroom when I use Silent Light, this is far away from any specific learner or group that it picks up the ambient hustle and bustle of my classroom to help the kids moderate their own noise level.

Why does Silent Light stop dinging?

You might notice that Silent Light stops making the sound it makes when the noise level changes every now and then. Silent Light will do this when the noise level is quickly flicking between two levels (say green and orange). When Silent Light dings too frequently in a short period of time it will automatically mute itself and slightly adjust the sensitivity to prevent annoyance.