Ipads

Posted on November 6, 2012 by Claire.
Categories: mobile technologies.

Just a quick post about using ipads in schools. 

Yes you guessed it, we have been exploring ipads.  Call me old fashioned but I hadn’t actually had the opportunity to ‘play’ with one of these before.  I’ve always been intrigued and have been pestering the other half for a while now, but when you have children to keep and nursery fees to pay luxuries like ipads really are few and far between.

So the ipad then.  Well, yes, I have to admit I did rather like it.  You can download screen after screen of apps from the Apple store and can scroll through the screens to find the app you require.  The ipad only has one button on the front which takes you back to the front screen, making it appear very user friendly, but as it is touch-screen technology the apps do contain lots of buttons which can prove problematic.  As I discovered when investigating a range of these apps, understanding how they work and what you are supposed to do is not easy.  Finding instructions or help for some of the apps was not easy, or impossible in some cases (although it may just be my inexperience).  However I did get around to using the morfo booth app which now appears to have been updated to a 3D version.  This app allows you to manipulate portrait photos of your friends/family/enemies if you like, as demonstrated in this video

Okay so the demo is being done on an iphone but the principle is the same.

I myself have a Samsung Galaxy SII phone which utilises the android market.  I did discover a morfo booth-like app which allows you to turn your nearest and dearest (sorry Alun) into their ancestral form using an app called MEanderthal.  (The app is available for both iphones and android.)

Homo neanderthalensis 200,000 – 28,000 years ago

Homo heidelbergensis 700,000 – 200,000 years ago

 

The website contains a vast quantity of information, from the Smithsonian  National Museum of Natural History, about the evolution of the human race and research into this area.  This could be linked (with a twist) into KS2 Science Sc2,5 – adaptation, looking at how humans have adapted to changing environments/habitats as well as Geography looking at the impact humans have had on areas and how even our ancestors with their most basic of tools and knowledge will have used and altered their habitat/environment.

 

So back to ipads.  Playing with the apps was easy enough and getting to grips with the ipad is pretty self-explanatory making their use in school pretty valuable in my opinion.  They are lightweight and portable and fairly robust too (a must with primary school pupils).  There are two downsides to them however in my opinion.  The first being the lack of USB port making uploading resources onto a PC problematic.  However as the ipad connects directly to the internet using WIFI it will be possible for pupils to email each other their resources/work and hopefully save their work onto the student domain of the main server – if this is possible through a WIFI connection.  The second problem then is that they are an apple product.  None of the schools I have been into use apple products (although I am aware that some schools have them, I just haven’t seen it for myself yet).  They all used what we might call ‘standard’ PCs and Laptops with Microsoft software.  Apple products are reputedly on the dearer side of the market and with the current Government making more and more cuts, finding the money to invest in ipads may be an issue.  It would be wonderful to think that all schools can give pupils access to a range of both Microsoft and Apple products enabling them to get to know how both systems work and begin to evaluate them and make judgements as to which may be most suitable to use in given circumstances, after-all justification and reasoning are key skills to be learnt during Primary school!

 

 

 

 

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