iPad Pro in the classroom

I wanted an iPad Pro. So I got one. With the Smart Keyboard. And the Apple Pencil. I wasn't quite sure what to do with it until I noticed my unused Apple TV. Bring the pair to school, hook the Apple TV up to the TV in the A/V room in which I teach and AirPlay. Boom! I could write out the words that my students are spelling out. I could highlight words in the stuff we're reading, I could write software to use in class. Plus, easier to show videos.

So I brought it in to work today and gave it a test.

Second period was my first class. Fifth graders. New students for me. I typed up a little greeting on the iPad Pro and had it displayed on the TV. Kids when nuts when I picked up the iPad and walked

Third period was a disaster. The Pencil just stopped responding. As I go over the way to write the small letters of the alphabet with my sixth graders, I result to drawing with my finger after disconnecting the Apple Pencil twice and reconnecting it via Bluetooth. But nothing. Except for intermittent moments of kind of working. How did I break my Pencil already? Is there some Bluetooth interference? This is a bust, I fear as I prepare for the next class of sixth graders.

Fourth period begins. I look down at the Pencil and noticed the tip was barely hanging on. I tighten it and it works. Whoops. In my nervous fiddling I had unscrewed the tip. Sorry Apple! Fourth through sixth period went great. I zoom in on the worksheet the kids were working on and go over the strokes of each letter with them. Using the various features of Notability, I draw a j and a J and then "cut" the J out and overlay it over its smaller version to show the students that the sizes are basically the same, you just draw the one lower and add a dot. This was not in my lesson plan, I just came up with it on the spot. But it was great. The kids loved it. I ended my classes with some phonics learning software. The kids totally dug it.

Now the day is over and I am writing this on the same iPad Pro. Boom. Love it.

Other than my own sabotaging of the Pencil, everything went great. The battery more than lasted[footnote]I charged it during lunch even though it didn't need it.[/footnote], swapping between typing on the Smart Keyboard and using the pencil was a great. It was so cool to just walk around class, writing, explaining and sometimes even giving students who needed the help a close up view of my writing, all while the other students got to see it on the screen.

My only complaint would be that the box the Apple TV came in is not meant to be used like this. I'll need something else to carry that around in, but otherwise, great success.