Monday, 28 January 2013

January 11, 2013 - iPad Know How

Hello Everyone,
I hope that you have all had a restful break with family and friends.  Some teachers have mentioned to me that they have received iPads as gifts and would like some tips and new apps to use with them. Some you may already know, others you may wish to save for later, but I think there is something here for almost everyone.  So here we go…

iPad Tips and Tricks
1. How to Rearrange the Icons and Create Folders
As you download more applications the system will continually add them to the last page on your iPad.  You can alter their location and group them in folders if you would like. Simply touch and hold any icon on the screen until they begin to wiggle.  Then you can drag them to a new spot or to the dock at the bottom of the screen.  Also if you drag them to the side of the screen they will transfer to the next page.  If you drag one on top of the other they create a folder where you can add other icons.  The iPad will name the folder for you however you can change the name by touching the current name and typing a new one.

2. Lock the Screen Orientation
The iPad will switch between portrait and landscape orientation depending how the device is being held.  If this is bothersome or if you are working with a projector you may wish to lock it in one view so that it won’t rotate.  Double click the home button (circle button not on the touch screen) until you see a row of icons at the bottom.  Swipe your finger from left to right until you see the orientation icon (see image below). When you tap the icon the device will lock in that orientation.  

3. Close Running Apps
Apps will continue to run in the background even if you have begun to work with another one and this may cause your iPad to run slowly.  To close them double click on the home button (circle not on the touch screen) then touch and hold any icon until they start wiggling.  Tap the minus sign on the icon to close the app then double click the home button to hide the row again.  This can also be used to switch between applications you are working with.

4. How to Copy and Paste Text (or have it spoken aloud)
To copy and paste text, you need to highlight the text first.  Begin by holding your finger on the word you want to copy.  Once it highlights, you can drag the bars at the ends of the word to enlarge the selected text to include a paragraph or whole page of text.  The iPad will then offer the options available to you (copy, define, speak, etc.) depending on the application you are in.  Simply tap the option you would like (in our case copy) then go to the place where you would like the text copied to (i.e. e-mail) and tap and hold the screen again.  The iPad will then give you the option to paste the previously selected text.  When you press and hold for text selection the speak option is fabulous for students who are struggling readers.  Try using it with iBooks or other reading apps.

5. Multi-tasking gestures
Most iPad gestures are ones that you will easily learn while you are using it - try swiping, tapping and pinching the images and pages.  In addition, you can use multi-finger motions by turning on the multi-tasking gestures option in the ‘Settings’ under the ‘General’ heading.  This will enable you to do the following:
-          Swipe upwards with four fingers to reveal the multi-tasking bar, swipe down again to close
-          Swipe left or right with four fingers to switch to the previous or next app
-          Pinch four fingers together to close the current app.

Fun Free Apps for Kids

Alphabet Tracing - Kindergarten and Primary
This app allows small children to use their finger to trace out the alphabet letters (upper and lower case) and numbers.  The animation shows the child the correct order and stroke direction as well as an image which begins with that letter.  By tapping the raccoon in the upper left corner you can change the colour of the tracing, offer blank pages and print off worksheets for students to use.

Tell Time Lite – Primary
This app helps students learn to tell time by offering a time and a clock face for students to manipulate the time.  In correctly identifying the time three times students earn a star.  In stop the clock mode students stop the hands of the clock to match the time given.  Earning stars is fun for the kids and after five stars they earn a fish for their aquarium.

Science 360 – Primary Junior and Intermediate 
This app offers images and videos from the National Science Foundation on a variety of science based topics.  By tapping news you can learn more about current research in scientific areas.

Planets – Junior and Intermediate
This 3D guide to the solar system is a fantastic way to view the solar system and celestial bodies.  By clicking on Globe at the bottom you can view the earth with the day night system.  Then if you tap the ‘Earth’ button at the top right-hand side you can change to other planets.  2D and 3D options are available to view the night sky and constellations. Great for Grade 6 science curriculum!

A Couple of Online Educational Games
Finally, if your students have some time left at the end of a class, have them give ‘Sugar, Sugar’ or ‘Where’s my Water’ a try.  Sugar, Sugar (Junior and intermediate) is a logic puzzle where you swipe or drag your mouse to create ramps and chutes upon which the sugar falls.  Try to direct the sugar to fill the cups with the correct amount of coloured sugar before the sugar runs out.  Give it a try but be careful, it can be addictive! With 30 levels available online in both ‘Sugar, Sugar’ and ‘Sugar, Sugar 2’ you can keep them busy for a while – and it’s educational!
“Where’s my Water’ is a similar game for primary students where they have to dig through the dirt and activate bombs to direct that water so that ‘Swampy’ can have enough water for his shower.

Where’s my water-

Junior Intermediate –
Sugar, Sugar -
Sugar, Sugar 2 -


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