Uh…it’s is finally here. iOS 4.2 I have been waiting, patiently for you. This software update to the iPad will definitely be a game changer. Creating Digital Learning Environments (DLE) are quite the rage right now. I agree with them whole-heartedly, but I believe in differentiated technology integration based on a school’s need. A laptop is not always the solution per se. The new OS has great implications for schools wanting to jump on the quickly moving 21st Century train.
Why can’t schools purchase the iPad, dock it into a keyboard, run the power cable to the wall (like in a lab), insert headphones and voile…a lab of iPads at a fraction of the cost. Students will be able to consume and create information and if need be…the device is instantly mobile.
With the new iOS we can now take advantage of:
Folders. One of my personal favs of the update. In schools the abyss of apps can be unnerving for some teachers and students. Now if a “lab” type set up is done…apps can be grouped according to grade or content area on the iPad. This is a great way to set the device up when it is being shared across content areas and grades.
Multitasking. Now with multitasking students can jump into one app and leave it running in the background and then jump to another. Great for when research is needed. Students can go to Safari and acquire a picture or other information and then add the data to another app.
AirPrint. Now this is an awesome addition to the iOS. Students and teachers are now able to print directly from the iPad. The only caveat is that there are only certain printers that will work with AirPrint. Here is a listing: http://www.macworld.com/reviews/collection/5806/airprint.html
AirPlay. This update allows users to share digital media like videos and photos wirelessly from their iPad to a TV and or speakers via Apple TV. I think Apple TV is very underestimated in an educational setting. Why couldn’t a group of teachers who teach 3rd grade share an Apple TV (if they are in close proximity). They could download awesome podcasts, videos from iTunes U and even Lit2 Go audiobooks and wirelessy tap into them and play them whole group in their classroom.
Find My iPad. This app allows the owner/guardian of an iPad to find it if it is lost or stolen. Another great feature, especially for schools who are concerned about theft of these coveted devices.
Well, this is my take on the new iOS 4.2 in education…I could say more, but my own iPad is beckoning for an upgrade.
The Cre8tiv Mind