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Apple took us to school with iPad at special event demonstration

Though Apple's event appeared to end with the conclusion of the keynote, there was still much more in store for those in attendance. We got an inside look at Apple's hands-on experience labs where they demoed how to integrate iPads, Garageband, and Clips into a teaching curriculum.




After Tim Cook left the stage, attendees followed their class schedules into several different classrooms within Lane Tech.

Shortly after, the school bell rang and "class" started. Each room had an instructor and a bevy of "teaching assistants" around the room and on the tables were several new 9.7" iPads, to be used during the lesson.

The time was split into three different classes: math, history, and coding. During each segment, the instructor demoed how he was using the Classroom app to launch apps on our tablets, and lock us into them.

During the math class, we followed along as the instructor explained the Fibonacci sequence (1,1,2,3,5,8,...), and then gave us the assignment to create a short poem. The syllables of each verse were to match with the corresponding number within the Fibonacci sequence. We then used the Clips app to record our poem using images, Live Text, new Posters, and the front-facing camera.

The goal was clearly to show how video, Clips, and the iPad could be brought into a math class to make the class more engaging. It certainly worked as we all tried to one-up one another in our video production skills.

After math, we started history class. Here, we had to make a presentation, actually the same JFK presentation demoed during the keynote, and were tasked with creating our own audio track and voiceover using GarageBand. We used the new space Live Loops added in the latest update to create an eerie background track, that we then recorded the famed JFK quote. It certainly made the otherwise standard keynote presentation more impressive.

Lastly, we participated in coding class. We went through a few basics inside of Swift Playgrounds before graduating to the Meebot programmable robot. Opening the Meebot playground within the app, we were able to program a series of dance moves in a loop. An assistant helped us connect the robot to our iPad and run our code. It turned into a pretty exciting bit of robot dance battling, all the while learning to code.

It was impressive to see the practical application of Apple's efforts, and was certainly entertaining enough for a room of adults. At the same time, how many times can your math teacher ask you to create a video poem throughout the year? It will certainly be interesting to see the other ways teachers in all subjects will be able to take advantage of this platform, and the new features being launched with ClassKit.