Workshops‎ > ‎

The 1 iPad Classroom

Possible iPad Configurations
  1. Whole Class - Teacher uses the iPad to display content on a projector for the whole class.
  2. Stations - A favorite in the elementary classroom. Attach a task to complete at a station.
  3. Pass Around - Not great with large classes, but can be useful for some collaborative tasks.
  4. Small Groups - Working in 2s, 3s, or 4s on some kind of collaborative group work.

Classroom Management Ideas
  • Heidi Butkis has a great Rules for the iPad poster that you can download and use in your class. Laminate it and post it on the walls of your classroom, and/or give one to every student.
  • In elementary classrooms, use timers to help facilitate turn taking. Just don't let students look for a new app when it is their turn. The sands of time move quickly...
  • Work in pairs or small groups taking turns at "pressing the buttons" (or whatever else is required in the app)
  • Headphones make the iPad a good deal less distracting for those that don't have it, and more involving for those that do have it! Headphone splitters mean more than one student can listen at once.
  • When working in small groups - assign roles to the group members (time keeper, iPad user, task master, etc) and rotate these roles so everyone gets a turn.

Great Apps for a 1 iPad Classroom
  • Class Dojo - Behavior Management tracking tool for the teacher
  • Socrative - Test taking tool that lets the next student take the assessment
  • iMovie - Video editing tool that allows students to shoot, edit and create movies/trailers.
  • Camera to display student work to the class when the iPad is connected to a projector
  • Skitch - Teacher uses it to annotate diagrams, or gets students to annotate for the class to see
  • Toontastic - Can be used in small groups to create digital cartoon stories
  • Scribble Press - Another great digital storytelling app that lets students write and illustrate stories.
  • Educreations - Interactive whiteboard app that makes screencasts of the lesson or student work. For more options, try ExplainEverything to record and annotate over PDFs, PowerPoints and more.
  • Qrafter - Scans QR codes. Great for a QR Scavnger Hunt which can be made for free at
  • Stick Pick - A can of virtual popsicle sticks, but also a way to record/evaluate student responses in class.
  • Doodle Buddy - Create pictures to save to the camera roll or use as a whiteboard in class.
  • Google Earth - Useful for Social Studies, mapping, locations, continents, states, etc and ALWAYS up to date.
  • DropVox - Record audio and automatically have it sent to a Dropbox folder on the teacher's computer. Or, use Audionote Lite for free and keep recordings on the device.

Lesson Integration Ideas
  • Use the iPad to differentiate. Extend your more able learners, or give your struggling learners more reinforcement. Just be sure to use it for all students, and not just the "smart" ones.
  • Schedule 1 on 1 time for students with the iPad. Shared time helps get everyone involved, but as with real life, 1 on 1 time is important too. You could even break out the digital timers here.
  • Use the iPad as a Listening Center or as part of your free reading time. There are many good, free books in the iBooks Store that could be used in your classroom during this time. Many have read aloud audio.
  • Find apps suitable for small group instruction. You as the teacher can lead the small group, demonstrate the skill with the app, and involve students in the learning process.
  • Project your iPad. Use Apple TV, Reflection or AirServer to project your iPad on the big screen for the whole class to see. Teach from the iPad. Have students take turns to interact with it like you would with an Interactive Whiteboard. 
  • Work on Collaborative Stories. Several students can work on a story at one time, so you don't need one iPad for every student in this kind of scenario, if everybody plays nice and takes their turn. Assign roles and rotate students through them.
  • Make fluency assessments - Record students reading with an audio app, or with the built-in video camera, and let them hear themselves back. Pair them as reading buddies and let them do their own versions of Dibels, recording each other's mistakes as they read and reread the same passage.
  • Give student assessments - Give student assessments with Socrative,, or the Accelerated Reader app if you use that. Assessments can be done on an individual basis and scores are recorded for the teacher. 
  • Make rubrics in Google Forms so the teacher can keep running records of students they conference with or work 1:1 with for reading or other activities. Have multiple forms open in tabs, one for each student, or use Class Dojo!
  • Create a QR Code Scavenger Hunt. Have students complete the hunt in small groups, taking turn to scan the QR code and search for the information. Try it for free here.
  • Screencast! Use apps like Educreations, ShowMe or Doceri to record screencasts of group projects, science investigations, math concepts, and more.
  • Create Movie Trailers with iMovie - A great collaborative experience where students get to plan, act, and shoot their own movie trailer! Link to stories in Language Arts, historical events in Social Studies, school events, field trips, etc.
  • Scan Text/Worksheets - Use the camera or a scanner app to capture text from a book, worksheet or self created graphic organizer and write on or annotate it in Skitch.