Technology in education is always changing and adapting, especially when it comes to tools to enhance K-12 classrooms. The newest updates to the Apple Pencil come with some incredible new features that take the learning experience to the next level, especially when used in conjunction with iPad devices.
In this article, we will go over some of the best ways for teachers and students to use an Apple Pencil for different subjects such as math, science and art, as well as the ease of taking notes and writing.
Apple Pencil is, at first glance, a pencil. It’s great for writing and taking notes, especially when used with applications like Notability or Popplet, and can be used with iPad devices as easily as writing on a piece of paper. With the Apple Pencil, teachers and students can create different notebooks on their iPad devices to separate subjects or projects, and write down notes or even draw directly on the iPad device. You also have the ability to write on emails, documents, PDF files or Keynote presentations for more precise notes.
When using the Apple Pencil, student and teacher’s handwriting will show up just as clear on their iPad devices as they would on paper, and is much easier than dragging a finger or swiping. Teachers are able to write notes on essays or Keynote presentations that students hand in through the iPad device, as well as add drawings using tools such as pens, highlighters, erasers and more. If the classroom is completely paper free, students can also take quizzes or tests using their Apple Pencil while the teacher grades them, which does away with any accidental smudging that you would get from normal ink and paper.
While the Apple Pencil is most certainly a writing tool, it can be used for a number of subjects. When used with applications such as Paper, students can pull up lined or dotted paper during their math class to graph lines and grids, as well as solve problems and draw geometric shapes. The great thing about Apple Pencil is that it comes with an array of colors, so that you can use different pens to create shapes, lines and formulas to keep track of what you’re learning.
Science classes become more interactive when teachers use the Apple Pencil to give an in-depth look at subjects such as anatomy or biology. Students can view different life cycles and zoom in or view aspects of the body such as muscles or parts of the brain, as well as simulate different experiments. You can also use the Apple Pencil to highlight different characteristics of science or even label parts of plants and animals.
There are many features of the Apple Pencil that makes it one of the best tools for creativity in the classroom. With endless options for colors, designs, shapes and more, students can create watercolor paintings in art class, layer pictures when learning about photography or even design buildings for an architecture project. Instead of using different paint brushes at a time or multiple drawing tools, students and teachers can double tap the side of the Pencil to quickly change the instrument they’re working with.
There have also been improvements to the tool itself that will enhance the drawing experience in art classrooms. For lessons about shadows or tints, students can simply tilt the Apple Pencil to shade on their iPad device. If they are drawing or painting, they will also be able to press down on the pen to create thicker lines, or decrease their hold to draw thinner lines, allowing students to draw, sketch or color in multiple forms.
Perhaps the most useful tool of using the Apple Pencil with iPad devices instead of a whiteboard is the fact that teachers can walk around during their class. If the classroom has an Apple TV set up, they can easily mirror their iPad device onto the Apple TV. This allows for enhanced mobility for the teacher, while the students can be more engaged in both the lesson and their educator. It’s great for teachers who enjoy hands-on learning with their students as well, so they are able to help directly at their desks through their iPad devices. Along with being able to roam, teachers also have the ability to simply stand out of eye range of the projection instead of the teacher marking up a board while standing in front of it, which allows for students to take notes easier and more efficiently.
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