10 Ways to Use the iPad in Your Classroom

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How can teachers use iPads in the classroom? Here are 10 ideas:

  1. Load iPads with eBooks and then select and assign reading groups for certain books. Simply hand the iPad to a group of students and have them read a book together.
  2. Select movies to view and again, hand them to groups of students. Then, have them use the iPad to write to a class blog or online course site, responding to discussion prompts.
  3. Use the iPad just like any Internet-connected computer, having students use Google Docs (install the Google Mobile apps) for collaborative writing and multimedia creation activities.
  4. Have students search for podcasts in iTunes on a topic of study and listen to them on the iPad.
  5. Subscribe to various periodicals and newspapers on the iPad and include a daily reading and discussion period.
  6. Watch any number of quality online shows, searching by the topic of study, bookmarking and maintaining a list and critique of sources. 
  7. Research the various iPad apps and have students list and critique them, creating an online resource guide for the iPad and school activities using Google Sites.
  8. Try out various Twitter apps for the iPad, such as TweetFlow and set up a class Twitter account to keep track of activities throughout the school year.
  9. Purchase the Keynote app and teach your students how to prepare professional presentations, using multimedia learning principles.
  10. Learn along with your students and take a class on iPhone and mobile development, working on an iPad app for your school.

14 thoughts on “10 Ways to Use the iPad in Your Classroom

  1. Barbara – great list, as I was thinking about the educational implications for the iPad myself. However, I feel like everything on the above list can be done with a simple netbook for half the cost in hardware.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m into the idea of using an iPad, but I’m not totally sold on what makes it “special” for the classroom yet.



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  4. Jraisner, you’re being kind … far too kind. This list of things to do is stretching the word ‘idea’ to the very brink. An idea contains a morsel of creativity. This unimaginative and woefully predictable list contains none whatsoever. Any teacher worth their salt would be left wondering what on earth these ideas bring to the table or how they contribute to the pedagogy of a student’s learning. The answer, sadly, is nothing at all.


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  6. It seems that most of the applications of an iPad involve mostly “sit and get”. The most powerful use of technology in the classroom is the ability to create and analyze. I’m not seeing the benefit of the iPad over MacBooks for teaching and learning just yet but am willing to explore. (I’m part of the MLTI initiative in Maine where all 7th and 8th graders have MacBooks.)


    • Yes, the iPad is definitely not a MacBook, but you can do a lot of the same stuff as on a traditional laptop. For instance, you can post to your blog, use traditional communication/collaboration tools, take notes, and use many, many apps suitable for specific purposes. A music teacher at Boise State uses it with her students (they each have an iPad) to do their keyboard/piano/sight-reading practice. Interactive gaming (how about Scrabble?) is another option. And the new iPad with the camera enables a lot more collaboration. Great to hear from a techie from Maine!


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  10. I’m Senior in high school and about half of my teachers used iPADs my econ teacher used to to draw supply and demand curves and things similar. My English teacher made power points and read her books of of it. My Calculus teacher used it to take attendance and write out the problems because it was easier than tyyping them on his macbook.


  11. Hi. Please take a look at our science lesson plan for preschoolers. We created an ipad app to introduce the scientific method to preschoolers. Preschoolers instinctively observe and ask questions. They also think outside the box because they are unaware of what’s normal or obvious. Have you given a preschooler a toy and watched them use it in numerous ways it was never meant to be used? They are naturally creative and innovative. This is why we think this is the perfect time to introduce preschoolers to the scientific method. It encourages creativity and critical thinking. http://www.dylanmonkey.com/lessonplan.htm Tell us what you think.


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