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Using iPads in Schools and Classrooms – Introduction

Updated: December 13, 2012 at 12:08pm

iPads are becoming more popular in our schools.  They have been used by Assistive  Technology (AT) for some time to address special needs of individual students, but many schools and teachers are seeing value in using iPads as a teacher-tool and/or with all students in any class.  iPads may be one of many pieces of technology that can help a teacher to more effectively deliver curriculum and increase student engagement.

iPads don’t provide the answer to all needs for all teachers in all schools.  This section is designed to provide schools and teachers with points to consider before making a decision to purchase iPads as well as some hints for use and management once a school has started using iPads.

The following sections will provide an overview of things to consider.  Since the use of iPads (and other similar devices) is quite new in our schools, new issues and advantages are being discovered regularly.  As a result, please bear in mind that not all eventualities will be discussed in this section.

  1. Before buying iPads
  2. Setting up your iPads
  3. Storage, Management & Use
  4. Selecting Apps
  5. Other iPad Tricks, Tips and Hints

Not all the points necessarily apply to all schools/classrooms and since the AT application of iPads is very specific, many of the points on these pages don’t apply to the iPads received from AT.

A special Thank You to Adrienne Blumenthal at Porter’s Lake Elementary School and Shelley Tulloch, Clair Bonin and Debbie Metherall at Bedford South School for sharing their experiences and for their assistance with editing and compilation of this section.

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1. Before buying iPads…

Updated: Is your school thinking about buying iPads for use in classrooms?  If so, there are some things that should be considered before you commit to the purchase. Infrastructure If the iPads are going to be used to access the internet, is there sufficient wireless access in your school to make this possible Management, control, …

2. Setting up your iPads

Updated: The following steps are generally what you may experience as you set up your iPads.  Some of these steps may already be done when you receive the iPads, those that need to be completed may be done by your school’s Technology Support specialist. Unpack the iPads from their boxes Set up a school iTunes account.  This …

3. Storage, Management & Use

Once you receive your iPads you’ll need to determine storage, management and use policies or guidelines.  Some things to consider: Where will the iPads be stored?  Is there an electrical outlet located conveniently to so the cart can be plugged in to charge the iPads?  Will they be safe/secure in this location? Who will be …

4. Selecting Apps

iPads need apps – finding good ones and purchasing them will be the responsibility of the school.  You’ll need a school iTunes account. Selecting, assessing and managing apps is an ongoing process.  Many apps have free versions that are limited and excellent for checking out the app.  Then if it seems useful, you can decide to buy …