For over a month now, I have been testing the capabilities of my iPad, and I have to admit, it has now become a seamless part of both my professional life and personal life. I would encourage all administrators to consider investing in an iPad for three reasons.
1. The iPad increases my level of "connectedness" to my staff and to PLN. Let's face it, taking a laptop into a meeting is a bulky enterprise at minimum. I have gotten into the habit of taking my iPad into every meeting I attend. During those meetings I am always connected to my teachers back in their classrooms. Using Skype and Google Talk, we can always be in contact even when I'm not in the building. For example, back at school, a teacher might have a question about whether I can attend a parent meeting that afternoon. They Skype me asking about my schedule. I immediately respond that I'm available or suggest a better meeting date or time. The combination of having my iPad and software like Skype gives me a level of "connectedness" with my staff at all times that was once not possible. I also gained another level of connectedness with my PLN using Twitter’s iPad app and the BlogPress app which allows me to compose and post blog posts using my iPad.
2. The iPad increases the level of my access to the cloud. With the applications like Dropbox, Google Docs, and Docs to Go, I have access to my entire professional document library with my iPad. I can type a letter and save it to my Google Docs or Dropbox, and have immediate access to that document using my Docs to Go app. I can type on my iPad the outline of a letter to be sent to my parents and save it to edit and print later using my desktop. Another great function of the iPad is that I can access documents like our student-parent handbook on my iPad at any time.
3. The iPad increases my ability to manage the day-to-day tasks of my job. With apps like GoTasks and Google App for iPad, I am able to easily add tasks to my to do list and dates to my calendar. For example, should I find myself in a meeting and someone requests a meeting date, I can access my Google Calendar, locate an acceptable date, and add it to my calendar. The iPad provides just one more access point to my Google Tasks and Google Calendar.
Getting an iPad should be a "no-brainer" for the administrator. It provides increased connectivity, increased access, and a higher level of job manageability. Just make sure you download the right apps.