Wednesday, February 5, 2014

10 iPad Myths….BUSTED

1.  An iPad is a laptop.
FALSE! An iPad is as far from a laptop as two devices can be.  They are meant to be a personal device and work best as such.  There is no file structure on the iPad. They are creation and publishing devices.  Work is meant to be offloaded to cloud based solutions such as iCloud, Google Drive, Drop Box, and YouTube.

2.  Kids know how to use an iPad as a learning tool.

FALSE! Kids know how to use iPads for entertainment, not education.  There is a learning curve for students with each app. Kids need to be introduced to the app and allowed “dabble time” to learn how the apps works. Then the app must be used in meaningful way in conjunction with the curriculum.  Students are able to demonstrate mastery of an objectives is many non-traditional ways.  

3.  iPads must be locked down.

FALSE! We believe that iPads need to used as organically as possible.  That means to have only put necessary restrictions on the iPad.  For example,  it will be necessary to add/remove apps, upload material from the iPad to YouTube, and update apps.  It is important for teachers to be independent iPad managers in their classroom and students to be as independent as possible.   

4.  The more apps the better.
FALSE! Two handfuls of apps are you need!  Selecting apps that are cross curriculum, allow for creativity, and work with Google Drive workflow are just the ticket.  Developing fluency with a core set of apps is essential to both student and teacher success.  Don’t get overwhelmed, just say no to more apps. Click here for a list of our 10 favorite apps.

5.  Google and Apple do not play well together.
FALSE! Google and Apple are the perfect duo on the iPads. Work on iPads need to be published not stored.  The apps we choose have “Google Workflow” meaning the app shares to Google Drive or YouTube.  They go together like oreos and milk.  All work resides in the cloud and easy to access by both students and teachers.  Even apps like Apple’s Pages can export back to Drive as a PDF for easy sharing.

6.  Experienced teachers do not need support.
FALSE! Teachers are experts on curriculum content and pedagogy, but not many have been taught with iPads nor have trained to teach with iPads.  A solid training plan is key to successful integration and use and in class support keeps teaching moving when technology roadblocks happen.

7.  Kids can’t keyboard on an iPad.
FALSE! Not only can they keyboard quickly on an iPad with their fingers, they can also voice type too!  Some students love to thumb type by pulling the iPad keyboard apart. Simply hold down the G and H key and pull it apart.  Do not fall into the snare of needing keyboards for iPads.  Save the money and buy more iPads instead.

8.  Admins know how to use iPads in the workplace
FALSE! Earning an admin certificate has nothing to do with being fluent with iPads.  Many admins (and most people) only utilize 10% of an iPad’s capability. To get more out of the iPad than a glorified note taker and calendar, continued training is needed.  Many administrators are using iPads as an email reader and an internet surfer.  

9.  An MDM is a must to manage the iPads.
It can be very costly to use some of the MDM’s out there today.  Districts could pay per device for these systems and often times the people “managing” the devices are not educators.  This can lead to a misunderstanding of what is needed on the devices.  iPads can easily be managed by individual teachers.  Restrictions can bet set on each device and apps loaded from a single Apple ID.  It might be the way you’ve been told to do it, but giving teachers as much control over their devices empowers them to own the process and tools.

10.  iPads cost too much money.
FALSE! An iPad is a solid investment for a school district.  An iPad is the device that makes it simple to personalize and differentiate the curriculum for all learners.  In addition, one iPad replaces so many physical tools in a classroom from calculators to dictionaries, books, pens, crayons, paper and more that at the end of the school year, you will find quite a cost savings.  In addition, iPads are also so easy to troubleshoot.  Aside from a cracked screen, iPads have proven themselves to be simple to “fix” when an issue arises.  Usually all that is necessary is a power off and power on.

Written by Ann Feldmann and Jennifer Krzystowczyk
@annfeldmann1 @jennykbps


  1. #2 is so true! I also appreciate trusting teachers and giving them control over the apps placed on the iPads. Empowering: excellent word choice!

  2. It is certainly necessary for the training before implementation. If I was just given a bunch of devices and not shown what to do, I'd be lost. The kids would only use them for entertainment. I'm glad I have a (very basic) knowledge of some of the educational uses.

  3. I am beginning to really see the truth in #4! Too many apps = unnecessary! Pick the ones best for you!

  4. I agree! Just because students are familiar with the iPad does not mean that they are familiar with it as a learning tool. Loved the Prezi!

  5. I can see how training is the key component of a successful iPAD classroom from teachers to students to administration to parents. It is difficult being a risk taker with so much at stake. You have to remind yourself that learning is the ultimate goal. The reality is learning could (and should) look different for each student. iPADS are essential in meeting the needs of all learners

  6. I am conflicted with #10, "one iPad replaces so many physical tools in a classroom from calculators to dictionaries, books, pens, crayons, paper and more..." On one hand, I can understand the justification of offsetting cost to a district's budget by buying an iPad instead of these supplies. On the other hand, it is disheartening to think my children (or grandchildren) may not experience the touch and feel of these real life objects (crayon lightness and darkness, turning the pages in a real book, pen and paper, dictionaries, guide words, learning alphabetical order, etc.) that could become obsolete from the classroom setting. I suppose that's what people thought when technology advanced from the quill and ink as well! :)