Apple introduces a new iPad for education

In late March, Apple announced some major products for education. Firstly, its new iPad is set at a lower price than before and it will work with Apple Pencil – a feature previously available only on the Apple Pro.

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Moreover, it also introduced some updates to its iWork suite of apps (Pages, Numbers and Keynote). These updates include features that allow you to use the pencil directly on the app. Pages now features a book creation template to allow pupils to create their own books and export them to the iBooks app

 

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New Accessibility Features from Microsoft.

For years, Microsoft have  lagged behind Apple in terms of accessibility features. However, with the rollout of Immersive Reader , Microsoft have introduced an excellent support for students with dyslexia and for those who need help with reading generally. Immersive Reader is a new feature in the Learning Tools add-on for for Word, OneNote, Outlook and Edge. It offers text to speech, text resizing, line focus, picture dictionary support and much more.

This is an example with the syllable feature turned on and the screen colour set to white on black.

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The screenshot below is from OneNote (free) on the iPad. The Picture Dictionary setting has been activated. It is worth noting that OneNote has some other great features besides Immersive Reader, such as scanning and sharing documents

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Brushing up your MS Office Skills

Microsoft Office is widely used in schools and at home so it is a good idea to brush up on our skills to get the most out of this popular suite of programs. Microsoft have a dedicated site offering free tutorials at https://support.office.com/en-us/office-training-center. To find more free (and low-cost) tutorials, please visit the excellent MakeUseOf site.

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 https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/microsoft-office-tutorials-courses/

Video Tutorials for Continuing Professional Development.

Being responsible for our own CPD means curating a list of reliable resources that one can use to develop skills in particular areas. Russel Stannard’s site http://www.teachertrainingvideos.com/ is an example of one such resource. It contains video tutorials on a range of teaching and learning tools.

These are his most popular video tutorials

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