Just to give you a few of my thoughts that I gained from his talk.
He started his talk by stipulating that the iPad is NOT a computer. Yes- it can do a lot of what a computer can do, but if you use it solely as a computer replacement then you are missing out of a lot of what it can do. I think this is the main difference between the iPad and what the competetion pushes. I had a person the other day telling me about the benefits of a windows tablet. “It is a FULL version of Windows with a full version of Office”. I must admit I walked away scratching my head, wondering why. I wasn’t sure if they didn’t get it or if it was me. The iPad is a device that does so much more. Jim highlighted the aspect of the creative side of it - iMovie, garage band, iPhoto - all built in. He, of course, wove this into quality pedagogy. He also dismissed the idea of having an iPad full of apps. Stick to the dozen or so that are going to enable you to produce high quality learning. To have students engaged in single apps doesn’t generate higher order learning.
He showed some great examples. One he showed was “Field of Mars” Environmental Education Centre. Steven Papp has been using iPads, iTunes U and iBooks (which the centre has made) to combine with field studies for environmental studies. Here is a link. http://fieldofmarseec.nsw.edu.au/
Make sure you check out their iBook and iTunes U course.
Jim spoke of iTunes U and the ability to create high quality course through it. He gave examples of courses that combined high quality, higher order learning - all contained with the necessary tasks, information, required apps and assessments. Combining this with the use of iBook Author for making your own interactive books.
He mentioned an app that I hadn’t come across before called “Showbe” that a number of schools are using. It is like a Edmodo type app where students can submit assignments and teachers can comment on. I am not sure what it will do that Edmod doesn’t already do but check it out. http://www.showbie.com/