The Invisible iPad in the Classroom

Posted on May 29 2014 - 10:25am by Glenn
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The IPad has many limitations and doesnt come close to what you can do on a normal computer, but it is a extremely popular item as more and more people put this at the top of their shopping list.

Since the launch of the iPad in 2010, we have seen a revolutionary transformation in how we create, consume, and communicate. Whether the iPad is an authentic educational tool is not relevant, because its not about the iPad.

Is the automobile an authentic education tool? What about the refrigerator? Revolutionary inventions are not about the invention itself, but what the invention gives use the ability to do. A truly revolutionary invention should, in time, become invisible. No longer is it viewed as something special, yet its effects are far reaching. The lightbulb changed the way the world functioned. The world was no longer bound to productivity during daylight, or the length of time it takes your oil lamp to burn up. It was about what you would be able to do because now there was a constant and stable source of light.

While the iPad does a little more than a lightbulb, its success in eduction is based on the principle that the iPad does the same for learners as the lightbulb: It liberates us from the limitations of creative tools, the challenges of access to quality content, as well as our source of inspiration, and innovation being based on geographic location.

But in conversations around learning, the iPad needs to be invisible because we’re searching for something deeper than a manipulative touch screen device. We are looking to start a conversation, create a personal expression, and to fashion a brick in a collaborative digital structure.

The iPad isn’t a great way to take a test, or read a book, or even create a movie. For progressive educators, it isnt enough to change how we use the iPad, but why we use the iPad — or any other device for that matter.

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