CHICAGO— At a press event designed to boost Apple’s presence in classrooms, the company on Tuesday announced a new 9.7 inch iPad, now with support for Apple Pencil. Starting at $329, the new iPad and Apple Pencil give users the ability to sketch ideas and jotting down handwritten notes to marking up screenshots. The new iPad is features a large Retina display, the A10 Fusion chip and advanced sensors that help deliver immersive augmented reality and all-day battery life.
“iPad is our vision for the future of computing and hundreds of millions of people around the world use it every day at work, in school and for play. This new 9.7-inch iPad takes everything people love about our most popular iPad and makes it even better for inspiring creativity and learning,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of Product Marketing.
NEW CURRICULUM APP
The iPad includes “Everyone Can Create,” a new, free curriculum from Apple that helps teachers integrate drawing, music, filmmaking or photography into their existing lesson plans for any subject. The new curriculum joins Apple’s “Everyone Can Code” initiative for teachers. Beginning later this spring, Apple Stores will begin teaching “Everyone Can Create” as part of their regular Today at Apple sessions for educators.
Apple also announced “Schoolwork,” a new app that helps teachers create assignments, see student progress and tap into the power of apps in the classroom. The company also announced that its “Classroom” teaching assistant that helps teachers manage student iPads and guide students through lessons, keep them on track and share work, is now coming to the Mac.
With Classroom, teachers can easily launch apps, books and webpages on all student devices at once or send and receive documents. Classroom lets teachers view student screens during class to help students stay focused, assign shared iPads to specific students for class and even reset a student’s password. The Mac version of the app will be available in beta starting in June.
Apple also announced a new collaboration with Chicago Public Schools and Northwestern University to offer free professional learning to teachers across Chicago, designed to give educators the tools they need to bring coding and computer science into the classroom.
Together, Apple, Chicago Public Schools and Northwestern University will establish a Center for Excellence at Lane Tech College Prep High School in Chicago, which will serve as a teaching and learning hub to introduce high school teachers to Apple’s Everyone Can Code curriculum. Teachers will also have the opportunity to be trained on the App Development with Swift course in an effort to help address the national shortage of high school computer science teachers.