Apple Education Event – A New Standard For Learning
A short while back we published an article in anticipation of the Apple Education event in Chicago. Apple has been committed to education for 40 years. In recent years it allowed itself to fall behind Google Chrome and Microsoft Windows operating systems and hardware in schools.
Apple is working to change that. The Apple Education Event was enlightening and full of surprises. It also showed that Apple is recommitting itself bigtime to Education. Not only by providing less expensive hardware but by creating an entirely new ecosystem focused on supporting teachers and students.
A new iPad was the star of the Apple education event. It features a new A10 processor and support for the Apple Pencil. Priced at $299 per unit for schools this iPad can go head-to-head with any other hardware option out there for education. In many ways, it surpasses the competition in form and function.
Software For Teachers
In addition to the new hardware, Apple is supporting the classroom and teachers in a big way. For example, the Classroom and Schoolwork apps.
These are new software apps for teachers and students that work in unison to deliver immersive educational experiences for young students. They provide teachers with the tools to organize, plan, and track their class assignments and progress. An added bonus is that all class data is secure and private. There is a new ClassKit API so 3rd party developers can get their apps into a school’s curriculum.
The Apple Teacher Learning Center is another new app to help teachers get up to speed with the new technologies that is now available to them. The app helps teachers build skills, show progress, and get inspired. You can see how other teachers are doing. Earn badges while you learn skills.
New updates to Pages, Numbers, and Keynote now support Apple Pencil so you can now markup, annotate, and draw in iWork Apps. New features like Smart Annotations that allow teachers to mark up student assignments with Smart Annotations. This means the annotations move with the type, they are not just ink on an additional layer in a PDF where you need to use a third-party app to annotate.
National initiatives like ConnectEd is another path Apple utilizes to bring their technology to the classroom.
Software For Students
There are over 1,000,000 apps in the App Store and over 200,000 of them are focused on education. Applications to teach music, language arts, science, coding, photography, filmmaking, app creation, and more. These apps, when used in the curriculum, are preparing and inspiring our students to be scientists, programmers, historians, musicians, artists, cartographers, teachers, presenters, researchers, journalists, and more.
Playground Physics is a free app that lets the student explore the physics in movements.
“record a video of you or your friends. Tap points along the way to trace a path of motion, and discover the motion, forces, and energy involved.”
The Clips app from Apple is a free iOS app available in the App Store.
“Clips is an iOS app for making and sharing fun videos with text, effects, graphics, and more.”
Augmented Reality is making its way into the classroom in a big way. Check out these incredible iOS apps that take learning to a new level.
Gives your student an opportunity to explore fine works of art. Transport your child on a virtual field trip to some of the finest museums. Get up close to some of the finest paintings the world’s museums have to offer. Complete with narrations and guides, this is truly an immersive experience.
“Through augmented reality, Boulevard Arts is reshaping the landscape of storytelling and revolutionizing the way the world looks at the arts.”
The World Wildlife Fund has a free app named Free Rivers. By using AR it puts an entire landscape on your table and in your hands. This immersive, augmented reality experience lets you discover a river that flows through the lives of people and wildlife. It teaches how their homes depend on those river flows.
“Dam the river to see what happens, and then try different options for sustainable development that keeps the river healthy and flowing. Collect stories of people and animals along the way!”
Froggipedia from Designmate is a sterling example of how AR technology will serve education. No need to slice open a real euthanized little frog for your passing grade in middle-school biology.
“The app provides an immersive and engaging experience”. “Froggipedia helps us observe the life cycle of a frog”. “We can further dissect and observe the complex structure of its various organ systems right on our iOS devices using an Apple pencil or your finger.”
The best part is that no harm comes to the frog. There is a quiz at the end that helps the student absorb the knowledge gained from using this innovative app.
This is a new curriculum Apple developed that brings coding to the classroom or at home. The heart of the curriculum is the Swift programming language. Swift Playgrounds introduces your child to coding
This new initiative is coming this fall from Apple.
“Everyone Can Create teaches students to develop and communicate ideas through video, photography, music, and drawing. And it gives teachers fun and meaningful ways to bring these skills into any lesson, topic, or assignment.”
If you are in education or a student or a parent, I would encourage you to view the Apple Education Event Keynote at the link below and see what is possible.
I would also encourage you to communicate what you learn about Apple Education initiatives to your child’s school administrators. These magnificent tools stimulate creativity and knowledge and bring learning for children and adults to a new level. Perhaps future generations will lead humanity to a smarter, safer, kinder, gentler world. One can only hope.