Sunday, May 5, 2013

Successful iPad Program

Ten keys to a successful school iPad program

By Sam Gliksman

“It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. If we are to develop our students’ sense of curiosity, we must be mindful to carve out time to allow our students to inquire and explore.”—Albert Einstein

It seems that every school is considering purchasing iPads these days, and Apple has reported that iPad sales to schools are currently outpacing MacBook sales by a very large margin. However, the rush to purchase iPads often precedes the careful planning and preparation that are so crucial to their success as educational tools.

It’s important for educators to understand that technology alone—no matter how full of potential it may be—is not the answer. Instead, iPads need to be integrated into the 21st-century classroom using a holistic approach. Teachers and administrators should identify the skills and abilities young people will need to succeed in our rapidly changing world and use technology to help students acquire them.

You’ve seen what kids look like when they handle an iPad—that’s what makes these devices ideal teaching aids. With little hesitation, young people jump right in, and within minutes they start drawing, reading, or finding some other activity that motivates, engages, and educates them.

Yes, it’s wonderful that kids love iPads, and educators will, too—if they know how to incorporate them into teaching. Having iPads in the classroom won’t make much of a long-term impact unless teachers know how to roll them out. Here, I list ten vital components of a successful iPad implementation:

First, determine whether or not you’re ready. There’s no point in purchasing iPads if you don’t have the technical infrastructure to manage and deploy them. I urge educators to consider the following questions:

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