An iPad has no USB; how do I transfer files?
The iPad does not have a USB, but that does not mean you cannot easily transfer files. There are a number of ways to do this:
- The iPad can plug into (via the supplied USB cable) your home PC or Mac and copy files across.
- You can email the file to yourself from your iPad, then open it on a PC or laptop
- We have found many new ways of manipulating files as more and more apps are released, and will share these with students progressively
- Students can also access their ‘Home’ file located on our server online
Our experience at school is that students lose USBs, forget to bring them, or sometimes the USB fails and all work on it is lost. Files are actually safer stored “in the cloud” on the Internet.
Can I print from an iPad?
Yes, we have systems in place to allow you to print directly from your iPad. This can be done via the printing option in the app, or you can email the printer a PDF file and it will print it.
An iPad can’t open Microsoft Office documents such as Word, Excel or PowerPoint.
Wrong, the iPad opens all of those documents. Office 365 is available for iPad, and is free for all current students. You can download these apps from the app store and then register them by signing up at Office.com and register using your college email address.
We also welcome the use of other word processing, spreadsheet and presentation apps such as Pages, Google Docs, Sheets, Google Sheets, Keynote and Google Slides. This apps will also allow you to open and save in the Microsoft Office formats.
You can’t save to an iPad.
Wrong again. Any file you create on an iPad is saved to it. In fact, when you use the Pages word processor it saves every word as you go. The iPad actually has a safer, more regular saving mechanism than most other devices.
Can I plug a keyboard into an iPad?
Yes you can plug in a keyboard. We have found the built-in screen keyboard works well, especially when you get used to it. However, if you are wanting to type up a large piece on your iPad rather than your home PC, you can buy an iPad keyboard dock, or you can connect a Bluetooth keyboard.
Should I get the Wi-Fi-only iPad, or pay more and get the Cellular model?
The Wi-Fi-only model would be recommended for a number of reasons. We have spent a deal of time and money putting in place a wireless network throughout the school. Your iPad will connect to this easily, and you will not be charged for any downloads. If you buy the cellular model, not only is it more expensive, you also have to go onto a plan and get a sim card, just as you do for your mobile phone. When you are not connected to a wireless network, the cellular connection will kick in, and your plan will be charged for any downloads. More importantly, with the Wi-Fi-only model, the iPad connects to the Parklands network and passes through all our Internet filters and security. A cellular model can bypass these filters. You can use a Wi-Fi iPad with any wireless hotspot, such as those found at coffee shops, McDonalds, hotels etc.
What size should I get, 32, 64, 128 or 256GB?
For school purposes, 64GB should be sufficient. However, we suggest you purchase as much memory as you can afford.
I have a PC at home, not a Mac; will the iPad work with my PC?
The iPad connects to either a Mac or a PC via iTunes. It doesn’t matter what you have at home. The iPad will sync, backup and talk to either PC or Mac desktops or laptops.
Have you compared the iPad with other devices?
Yes. As part of our pilot program, we compared a number of devices, taking into account the numerous factors relevant to Parklands, including the relative merits of a multi-purpose device compared to a single-purpose device. The comparison therefore paid particular attention to the broad range of educational uses of any proposed device across many subjects within Parklands. Other considerations include classrooms dynamics between students and teachers, the physical layout of Parklands teaching spaces, maintenance needs and cost. Taking all factors into account, the overwhelming support was for the iPad. While other multi-purpose tablet devices have entered the market and can also cater to the learning styles of visual, auditory and kinaesthetic learners, our comparison shows that of the current models, the iPad is currently superior.
Do I need to do anything about the safety and security of my child’s iPad?
Yes. We are not overly concerned about theft of iPads at our school. However there is a number of things we should consider:
- Insure the iPad on my home and contents policy
- Engrave the device
- Buy a good cover – damage caused by neglect or silliness is a real possibility
- Register my device with Apple
- Use “find my device”
- Make sure you (the parent who spent a lot of money) establish and reinforce your expectations for responsibility and care for the device
- Ensure the iPad comes home every afternoon – it should never be left at school overnight!
Have you considered cybersafety?
Yes we have! Cybersafety is already an important part of our ICT curriculum. Every child is introduced to cybersafety in our IT subjects, during our orientation programs and now as a part of our iPad program. For more information about cybersafety visit the CYBER SMART web site.
We thank and acknowledge our friends at Northside Christian College for providing much of the above content.