Setting Up iPad Security For Classrooms

Now that I am independently setting up a classroom environment with technology, I need to ensure that students are safely able to use the devices within the room.  In the past, the school district was in charge of pushing apps and setting up restrictions on iPads and the internet.

When starting out without a tech team to support me, I’ve been the one to figure out how to implement restrictions on the iPad. For my techies out there that have suggestions on how to make the iPads safer for kiddos, please let me know!

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..Safety so far…

  1. I set up 1 iPad to act as a “parent” iPad.
  2. All iPads are set so students can not access Siri (for now).
  3. Installing, Deleting, and In-App purchases are restricted.  I can download apps if I input passwords.  This is time consuming, but worth it so students don’t go crazy on the app store.
  4. I left on AirDrop in case students need to send large files from their iPad to my MacBook.
  5. I also left on FaceTime and Podcasts in case we use either in an educational fashion.  See post on FaceTiming in the classroom here.  I want to use Podcasts this year as a way to look at narrative writing.  Mike Rowe is a great story teller on the Podcast show “The Way I Heard It”.  If you’re a teacher who has used Podcasts in this or another fashion please let me know what worked and what did not. 🙂
  6. I cleaned up a lot of the content and set many, many restrictions.  I even restricted general use of the internet until I know how well the school’s internet filter works on the devices.

In order to collect, curate, and share student work within our class and with the community I started setting students up on Showbie last week.  With 47 students and 6 iPads, I understand it may take some time to get all students logged on.  I know this will be one of the most powerful tools we incorporate into our room.  This tool will allow students to connect with me and with each other.  Parents will be able to access student work, and students will be able to keep their work in one organized space for the entire school year.  You can read more about how Showbie has worked in my classroom by clicking here.

If you or someone you know has experience in regards to protection with iPads and can give me any additional help or suggestions, I would appreciate it!  So far, the restrictions are working pretty well and the iPads are extremely safe.   We are finalizing our first class project and I am so excited to share those with you!

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