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IPad in the classroom

iPads in the classroom

This is an email to a college about iPads in the classroom. The question was should we buy net books or iPads.


Too me a net book is just a small underpowered laptop. It may be cheaper but it also has less performance.

Most people are going the tablet route. There are some things you need to think about.
iPads are amazing machines that you can do great things on. I have one at home and love it. It is very simple for the user to use. Starts up instantly and has some amazing apps that do all sorts of things.
How that translates to the classroom is another story. I see a lot of iPads and ipods in school that are just being used to play educational games on. If this is the case it is a very expensive way to just play games. Remembering that you can get the same or better online.
The guys that are getting the most out of them are using them as tools for moviemaking, picture editing, blogging, collaborative apps... They are not worried about the games but the tools for learning.
My challenge to schools thinking about it is; is the machine(iPad) running your learning or are you running the machine. 

You also have to realize that you can not use them to connect to your class files or teacher share folders. There is no word processor that will easily interact with office either. This leaves you with making your students work "in the cloud" (online word processors) the easiest the implement is google docs but I have been having real issues with this on my iPad at home. This is also very hard for juniors to work with as each student needs there own login to make it work properly.

I would love to have iPads in my room but can't yet justify in my own mind that they will be anywhere near as usefull as a group of laptops. 

My thoughts are still that laptops are where we should be investing. In saying this I have not had extended access to android tablets and am looking for one that I can test on.

It comes down to how/will your teachers use them! 

This is a lot to think about and I seriously suggest you go and see a school using iPads to see how they are using them before you jump in.




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