SchoolArts Magazine

MAR 2013

SchoolArts is a national art education magazine committed to promoting excellence, advocacy, and professional support for educators in the visual arts since 1901.

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@r+ iPads in the Artroom David Gran T ruth be told, I've wanted an iPad since long before they even existed. There is a scene in Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey in which astronauts Dave Bowman and Frank Poole are sitting down to dinner and watching a news program on what appear to be their very large tablets. Kubrick was obviously not predicting the iPad; we see these devices used for no other purpose in the film, and assume they are basically portable TVs. For all of Kubrick's prescience about the relationship of man and his tools, the iPad probably better represents the multifunctionality of the super computer HAL. The advantage of the iPad over HAL (besides the obvious homicidal tendencies of the latter) is in its portability. The iPad can be an indispensable tool for an art teacher on the move. Listed below are free and lowcost apps that can be very useful to an art teacher with an iPad or iPhone. Zapd Picture this: You're in a gallery (that allows photography), and the sculptures perfectly illustrate the concept of negative space, which has been the latest topic in class. All you have is your iPad or iPhone. What do you do? Create a website on the spot with Zapd (zapd. com). Snap photos, create your site, and publish. 26 March 2013 SchoolArts Haiku Deck Back in the classroom, Haiku Deck ( is an amazing application for developing beautiful presentations quickly and efficiently. Within this all-encompassing application you can add your own text and choose from a number of different styles. You can upload your photos or do a creative commons search for images online. The interface is so intuitive and streamlined that you can have great material ready for presentation in a matter of minutes. Mobile Mouse Mobile Mouse ( will allow you to control your computer from anywhere in the classroom. The program also contains a pop-up keyboard and shortcuts to any program you have installed in your dock. It will even give you shortcut keys for some programs. If you're using a projector, you can call up any file or program for demonstration while walking around the room. Idea Generators Some of my favorite programs are much lesser known, but quite effective in pushing students to think in new directions. Brian Eno's Oblique Strategies ( is a digital recreation of a deck of cards he and Peter Schmidt created in 1970. Each card offers an aphorism to help the user to overcome a Have an Android? These applications are all available from Google Play: • Mobile Mouse • Diigo • Evernote • Pinterest • Oblique Strategies creative block. Inspiro ( and the Idea Generator ( are excellent random idea generators meant to spark creative responses. Both have content that may not be appropriate for all audiences, but have customizable databases you can change to meet your needs. For more ideas about the multiple ways that iPads can be used in your classroom, there is no better resource for art teachers than iPads in Art Education ( This comprehensive site created by Tricia Fuglestad and Suzanne Tiedemann details various useful apps for teachers and students, and includes helpful videos that demonstrate their application. Next month we'll look at how the iPad and iPhone are changing photography and examine some of the best photo apps for your classes. David Gran teaches high school art and film classes at the Shanghai American School in China and is the author of The Carrot Revolution, a blog about twenty-first century art education (

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