Category Archives: iPad in Education

iPad in Education: iPads Chosen in $30 Million Deal with Los Angeles Board of Education

iPad in Education

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Apple has announced today that they’ve received approval from the Los Angeles Board of Education on a $30 million rollout of iPads to the nation’s 2nd largest school district.

The iPad rollout in the LA Unified School District will start this fall and will bring iPads to every student across the district’s 47 campuses. Here’s a little details on the apps that will be used on the iPads and a great quite on the reasons why the iPad was selected:

“The Board voted unanimously for Apple because iPad rated the best in quality, was the least expensive option and received the highest scoring by the review panel that included students and teachers,” said Jaime Aquino, LAUSD Deputy Superintendent of Instruction. “The vote is another step forward in the District’s plan to equip every one of its students with a device by 2014. When completed, the LAUSD will become the largest district in the nation to provide each of its students with the technology.”

Apple will provide iPads that include the Pearson Common Core System of Courses delivered via a new app as part of the integrated solution. Apps such as iWork®, iLife® and iTunes®, in addition to a range of educational third-party apps are also included.

Good to see that the LA Board of Education missed the (Microsoft) memo about the iPad being only for consumption and can somehow get by without Powerpoint.

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Featured in the iPad App Store this Week: Apps for Elementary Schools

iPad Apps for Elementary School

This week the Featured section of the iPad App Store is full of even more highlighted app collections than usual. One of the notable app collections that caught my eye is ‘Apps for Elementary School’ – as I have a daughter in 4th grade.

The collection covers a lot of ground. It includes around 275 apps divided into these main sections: Math, Literacy, Science, Social Studies, Art & Music, and Health & Fitness.

Each of those main sections has useful sub-sections to make it easier for specific apps that you or your elementary school age kids may be interested in. For example, the Math section has sub-sections for Measurement & Data, Shapes & Spatial Reasoning, The Number System, Drill & Practice, Beyond Drill – Strategy, and Beyond Drill – Brain Busters; and the Social Studies section has sub-sections for World Cultures, Geography, and History & Historical Figures.

I’ve spent a good amount of time browsing the collection and I’m still far from done – but I’ve already seen some of my daughter’s favorites and quite a few promising apps we need to try out.

You can find the Apps for Elementary School collection in the top rotating panel of the Featured tab in the iPad App Store.

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10 Great iPad Apps for Students on the Autism Spectrum

Proloquo2Go iPad app

I’m continually impressed and amazed at how much impact the iPad is having in education – and especially in helping students with autism or on the autism spectrum. So I’m delighted to share this guest post today, covering 10 great iPad apps (and one great iPad case) for Students on the Autism Spectrum.

This post was written by Cathy Hoesterey. Here’s a little background on Cathy and her qualifications to write on this subject:

Cathy Hoesterey is an assistive technology specialist and occupational therapist living in Bellevue, WA near Seattle. She works for Belllevue School District in the special education department providing technology for special needs students ages 3-21 years old.

Cathy presents at national conferences and gives webinars on iPads and other assistive technologies. Her blog iPad for All is designed to support iPad users of all ages and abilities, as well as educators, therapists and families. She finds the overwhelmingly positive response of her students to the iPad energizing and rewarding.

As an assistive technology specialist working with special needs students for many years now, I’ve seen a lot of technology come and go. However, I have never seen a device so engaging and versatile as the iPad. In the past it was not uncommon for a student to abandon an expensive communication device because it was too complex to use, heavy and often unattractive. The iPad has a certain cool factor with students and their peers that cannot be underestimated. Teachers and family members are also more willing to use it.

ABC News recently reported that a government survey of parents says 1 in 50 U.S. schoolchildren has autism. The definition of autism has expanded to include less severe and related conditions such as Asperger Syndrome. I work with dozens of students who have significant communication needs, the majority of them with autism. The apps that follow are some of those that we most frequently use with students on the autism spectrum. Of course, every student’s needs are unique so we do customize the iPad or other device to meet their particular needs.

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iPad in Education: at Burlington High School

iPad in Education

Apple has a superb ‘Apple in Education’ profile video up – highlighting the great impact iPads are making at Burlington High School in Massachusetts.

The school’s principal and teachers talk about how well the iPad has worked and how it has replaced expensive computer labs. They stress that students can now do everything on a single device – they don’t have to go to different devices for different tasks. One teacher speaks on how the iPad has expanded the possibilities for student projects

… students can do a video, do a paper, do a website. It just opens up far more options for them than we ever had before.

Here’s a great line from the principal, Patrick Larkin:

We felt, and we still do, that it was the best content delivery device – and was also the best content creation device.

Once again, so much for Microsoft and others claiming the iPad is just a consumption device.

The video is just over four minutes and it’s well worth a look – check it out at this Apple in Education page.

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iPad in Education: 8 Million iPads Sold to Educational Institutions

iPad Education Apps

Apple shared some impressive numbers today about iTunes U, which has passed the 1 billion downloads milestone.

They also offered up some very impressive numbers relating to the iPad in the education arena – including:

— 4.5 iPad sold to US educational institutions

— 8 million iPads sold to educational institutions around the world

— iPad sales in this area are shwoing some strong momentum – with sales to the K-12 market doubling in year over year figures for Q3 of 2012. This momentum should just get stronger with the range of less expensive iPads growing.

These sort of numbers are great to see, and offer further proof that the iPad is such a powerful tool for educators and students.

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Recommended: 10 reasons the iPad is an awesome tool for classrooms and education

iPad on student desktop

I read a great article the other day on iPads in the classroom, over at iSource. The title, as mentioned above is ‘10 Reasons the iPad is an awesome tool for classrooms and education’. It’s written by a guy who would know, Brad Gurgel,since he serves as a principal and teacher at a school that has adopted iPads on a 1:1 device to student ratio.

Some of you may remember Brad did one of our What’s on Your iPad posts with me last year.

I won’t give away too much of Brad’s Top 10, but I will share my favorite reason on his list:

5 – Extremely Affordable, Well-Polished Software

Once the iPads are purchased, they can be filled with high quality educational software without spending another dime! Thousands of effective and fun educational apps are available for free.  Even the apps developed by professional software companies rarely cost more than a dollar or two.  For the price of just one typical computer software package, often ten or more apps can be purchased for the iPads.  A special volume purchasing program is available through Apple that offers special discounts to schools on many apps that cost money.

All his reasons make sense, but this one hits home the most for me, as I see it in action every day with my 9 year old daughter and her iPad at home and with shared iPads in her elementary school classes.

Check out Brad’s full post for a great read and the rest of those 10 reasons.

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Learning with on iPad

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Even if you have been following trends in online education only casually in recent years, you will have noted that the advent of the iPad (and rivals) has opened up many avenues towards new interactive and mobile learning methods. It is sometimes hard to believe that we once lived in a world where YoutubeKhan academy or TED Talks were unknowns or did not enjoy broad appeal. Coupled with the popularity of iPads and the beginning of the Tablet Age, we are now in the lucky situation of being able to find a video tutorial or range of online courses on a vast array of topics. With quick and easy access to these platforms, we can educate both ourselves and children using our mobile devices. Continue reading

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iPad in Education: Report Shows School Districts Doubling Down on Their iPad Rollouts


It looks like the iPad’s impact in the education arena in the US is continuing to grow. A recent report by Fox Business cites some of the impressive numbers for the iPad in the education market and also some evidence of increasing momentum for Apple’s tablet.

Here are some of the things that caught my attention in the report:

— As we already knew from Apple’s financial results announcement, iPad sales are on the rise while PC sales are falling.

Apple (AAPL: 661.31, +1.92, +0.29%) sold almost a million iPads to education buyers in the K-12 market in the third quarter alone, doubling sales from a year ago, according to an analyst at Needham & Co. By contrast, PC shipments in the education market reportedly fell 13.9% during the same period.

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More Crazy iPad Numbers: K12 Customers Bought Twice as Many iPads as Macs Last Quarter

Crazy iPad Numbers black

There were a lot of crazy, impressive iPad numbers revealed in this week’s Apple Q2 financial results call – including 67 million iPads sold in two years. A recent report at Apple Insider highlights a few more impressive numbers mentioned by Apple, specifically relating to the education sector.

Here’s the first one:

Apple’s chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer noted in the company’s Q2 conference call that US K-12 education customers had purchased twice as many iPads as Macs, despite also setting a new record in Mac sales for the quarter.

I would bet this will be the start of a continuing trend – not just because of Post-PC era type momentum for tablets in general, but also because the iPad is just so well-suited for the education sector. The form factor and design of the device, the great range of education apps for K12 right through university students, iTunes U and iBooks Author and iBooks textbooks are all things that make it such a great fit.

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Study Shows iPads in Kindergarten Class Improve Literacy

iPad in Kindergarten

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Initial results from a research study in Auburn, Maine show that kindergarten literacy scores increased in classrooms where iPads were used. Auburn is the first public school system in the US to provide iPads to each of their youngest students; and they are monitoring the iPad program carefully. The research findings are part of a randomized control trial, as explained by a report from the Auburn School Department:

During the Fall of 2011, the district provided iPads to half of Auburn’s sixteen kindergarten classrooms. The remaining eight classes used traditional resources. The eight iPad classes were selected at random to provide a better examination of the short term literacy impacts. Auburn kindergartners from both settings completed a series of standardized literacy assessments in early  September (pre-iPad) and in late November (post-iPad), which provide an objective measure on each groups’ emerging literacy skills.

The study results were presented last week, and they are very positive:

The School Committee was pleased to learn that the study results were quite positive. In fact, students in the iPad classes outperformed non- iPad students, on average, across every literacy measure they were tested on.

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iPads in Education: Wake up and Smell the Future

iPads in Education

I love it how a few days after the Consumer Electronics Show 2012 in Las Vegas ended, where people lustily obsessed over 55-inch wafer-thin screen TVs, Apple has got people talking  arguing about education reform.

Two years after launch, Apple has now unwittingly made the use of iPads in the classroom the topic of discourse and mild controversy. Finally.

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