Reactions to Freshmen iPads

Marisa Goffman, Features Writer

Courtesy Rosemount Town Pages

Within the first weeks of freshman students’ high school careers, they received their own iPads. On November 3, 2015, a referendum was passed to be able to allow schools in District 196 to have iPads in every classroom. iPads are thought to be key to enhancing a student’s learning; however, the students don’t always feel the same way.

Turning their iPads on, the first thing most freshmen noticed was the lack of an app store. Instead, there was a self-service app with limited educational tools for their use. Most of the freshmen responded to this negatively, saying they were old enough to be able to make responsible decisions. Natalie Stout comments on the fact that without an app store there are some apps for educational use that cannot be obtained. Along with this, there are other disadvantages to having iPads in the classroom. For example, they can be a distraction to kids’ learning. Emma Veldheis responds, “I put my notes on there so I can just read the notes and I don’t write them down, causing me to not remember them as well.” The technology is also very easy to break. Often students can’t even get onto the Wi-Fi because of the overload of everyone using it at once.

However, freshmen also feel positively about their iPads. Veldheis continues, “It makes things easier because of all the stuff you can do, like turning in assignments electronically and receiving instant feedback.” iPads make it easier to access online and electronic educational tools to enhance learning. When each student has their own device, teachers can assign online homework without worrying that some students won’t be able to access it. iPads are successfully used in classrooms for tests, assignments, projects, and interactive activities like Kahoot.

Many teachers are happy about the passing of the referendum, though most say they are still getting used to the iPads. Maybe in the future, EHS classrooms will use electronics instead of notebooks.