Why is the iPad such a great tool for students?
We believe students today need a 21st-century communication tool that they can use to collect, synthesize, and produce evidence of their learning.
Westminster has been researching laptops for students since 2010 when it was evident that mobile technology was changing the social, economic, and educational landscape globally. As the iPad 1 was introduced, it was clear that education was on the verge of something uniquely compelling and different from the desktop and laptop computers. The improvements to the product and the global adoption of the tool make its integration into the educational life of students an obvious step for schools to take.
Some key reasons that Westminster has chosen the iPad to be the device used in school are:
- The long battery life means that students can make it through an entire school day without recharging.
- It allows for easy face-to-face interaction, avoiding the barrier between students and teachers that occurs with a traditional laptop lid.
- Drawing on the iPad’s screen is useful in a variety of disciplines.
- Handwriting on the iPad’s screen is useful for quick note-taking in all classes.
- Pen-based annotation of documents and books is quick and easy.
- Reading textbooks and other long-form materials on the iPad is more comfortable than on a traditional laptop screen.
- The iPad’s small size allows it to fit conveniently in student lockers and backpacks.
- The broad developer base provides numerous discipline-specific apps.
- The iPad’s instant on/off capability preserves class-time for meaningful learning activities.
- The built-in camera takes quality pictures and movies and is easy to use for in-class activities. With one or two simple taps, the images taken by the camera can be accessed and integrated into a seemingly endless array of iPad apps.
- There are fewer pieces and components on the iPad than on a traditional laptop, reducing maintenance.