Ideal iPad Settings for School Use

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*PLEASE NOTE: The layout of the Settings menu is subject to change as Apple updates their iOS. This guide was written with iOS version 6.1.3, but should remain fairly accurate for the foreseeable future.*

There are several settings that students will want to change on their iPad in order to maximize their efficiency and minimize distractions in the classroom. For a full list of all the settings, what they do, and what students should change, look further down this document. But first, the short version:

Critical Student Settings

1) Notifications: Remove all apps from notification center (except maybe MAIL and CALENDAR)

2) General About: Name your iPad with whatever your teacher tells you to do (Usually Last name + Homeroom #).

3) General Auto-Lock: 15 MINUTES or NEVER (15 is good just to avoid an accidental sleep during a presentation & Never might be risky for a kid who might leave the screen on and get distracted, leaving them with a dead battery)

4) General Passcode Lock: ON (set passcode you can remember easily, ideally the same as their AppleID password and email password)

5) General Use Side Switch To: LOCK ROTATION (good for during a presentation)

6) General Keyboard Auto-correction: OFF (kids assume it’s always fixing everything and you’ll end up with some crazy words in the middle of a report.

7) Sounds Keyboard Clicks: OFF (can you imagine a classroom of clicks!)

8) Privacy Location Services: ON (But keep most apps OFF in the list, but specifically turn ON “Find my iPad at the bottom. DEFINITELY KEEP THE CAMERA APP TURNED OFF IN THIS LIST! You do NOT want the camera app putting hidden location data about your child into any photo they take.)

9) Privacy Photos: This will contain a list of all the apps that have requested permission to access your photos and videos. If you have an app that allows you to insert photos into documents or presentations or edit photos in any way, you need to ensure that the specified app is turned ON in this menu.

10) iCloud: Use your AppleID for the account (if not already entered). Then, turn ON all options except Mail.

11) Mail, Contacts, Calendars: This is where students can set up their email account by inputting their email address and email password. All other settings can remain as their defaults.

12) Safari Private Browsing: ON

Full Breakdown of Settings

 

On the iPad, click on “Settings” to bring up the General Settings menu. This tutorial will go through each submenu on the list on the left one at a time.

1) Airplane Mode: Leave this OFF as turning it on will prevent the iPad from connecting to Wi-Fi

2) Wi-Fi: The school will help students connect to the school wireless internet. Parents need not mess with this setting unless you want your child to connect to your home Wi-Fi network.

3) Bluetooth: The school will not utilize this feature; however, if your child owns a Bluetooth keyboard, they are welcome to bring it in and use it in school. You can set up the keyboard using this menu option.

4) VPN: Students will not need this feature.

5) Do Not Disturb: Turning this on will disable notifications and a few other features temporarily. However, it would be better for students to permanently turn off notifications separately.

6) Notifications:

  1. a. It is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that students turn off notifications for ALL APPS except for maybe MAIL and CALENDAR.
  2. b. Students should ESPECIALLY turn off the notifications for iMessage. To do so, click on iMessage under the list of apps in the Notification center and do the following:
    1. Turn “Notification Center” off at the top
    2. Alert Style: NONE
    3. Badge App Icon: ON or OFF (your preference)
    4. Text tone: NONE
    5. Show preview: OFF
    6. Repeat Alert: NEVER
    7. Show iMessage Alerts From: (either option)
    8. View in Lock Screen: OFF

     

     

7) General Settings:

  1. About: This lets you change your iPad’s NAME. The school should come up with a consistent naming convention and have ALL STUDENTS use the same name. Our school uses: “Last Name HR###” (where HR### is their homeroom number)
  2. Software Update: Click here to update iOS. It is strongly recommended that students do this AFTER SCHOOL otherwise it might take a long time causing them to be unable to use the iPad during class and it could cripple the school’s bandwidth if everybody updates at once.
  3. Usage: Use this to see which apps are taking up the most space. This will let you know what to delete if you need to open up some space.
  4. Siri: Only available on new iPads. You can leave it on or off.
  5. VPN: Students can ignore this.
  6. iTunes Wi-Fi Sync: This is disabled for students’ iPads at our school.
  7. Spotlight Search: Leave default settings (everything checked)
  8. Auto-Lock: This should be set to 15 MINUTES or NEVER
  9. Passcode Lock: This should be set to ON automatically by the school. Students should pick a passcode they can easily remember (ideally the same as their AppleID password and email password)
  10. iPad Cover Lock/Unlock: Students can ignore this.
  11. Restrictions: This is where parents can set restrictions on their child’s iPad with a separate password the student would not know. See our guide on RESTRICTIONS for more details and instructions.
  12. Use Side Switch To: Set this to LOCK ROTATION.
  13. Multitasking Gestures: Leave ON
  14. Date & Time: Ensure “Set Automatically” is ON, otherwise students can ignore this.
  15. Keyboard: Turn OFF “Auto-Correction”, but you can leave everything else on.
  16. International: Students can ignore this.
  17. Accessibility: Students can ignore this (and definitely should, as changing these settings can cause a lot of difficulty with the iPad)
  18. Profiles: Students can ignore this (and definitely should, as deleting any profiles can cause errors or disciplinary action).
  19. Reset: DO NOT PRESS.

 

 

 

8) Sounds: You can ignore (or change) most of the settings in this menu, although the one definite change should be to TURN KEYBOARD CLICKS “OFF”.

9) Brightness & Wallpaper: Students can customize this themselves. This is where they set the background pictures for their iPad. Be sure to use school-appropriate photos!

10) Picture Frame: Students can ignore this.

11) Privacy:

  1. Location Services: Turn this ON (But keep most apps OFF in the list, but specifically turn ON “Find my iPad” at the bottom. DEFINITELY KEEP THE CAMERA APP TURNED OFF IN THIS LIST! You do NOT want the camera app putting hidden location data about your child into any photo they take.)
  2. Contacts: Ignore.

 

  1. Calendar: Ignore.
  2. Reminders: Ignore.
  3. Photos: This will contain a list of all the apps that have requested permission to access your photos and videos. If you have an app that allows you to insert photos into documents or presentations or edit photos in any way, you need to ensure that the specified app is turned ON in this menu.
  4. Bluetooth Sharing: Ignore.
  5. Twitter: Ignore.
  6. Facebook: Ignore.

 

 

 

12) iCloud: Use your AppleID for the account (if not already entered). Then, turn ON all options except Mail and Notes.

13) Mail, Contacts, Calendars: This is where students can set up their email account by inputting their email address and email password. All other settings can remain as their defaults.

14) Notes: Students can ignore this.

15) Reminders: Students can ignore this.

16) Messages: This is where parents can turn off iMessage if they have set certain restrictions on their child’s iPad with a separate password the student would not know. See our guide on RESTRICTIONS and BLOCKING iMESSAGE for more details and instructions. If parents do not want to block iMessage, then this menu item can be ignored.

17) Facetime: Students can ignore this. Parents, however, can use this menu feature to turn off Facetime using the same process as they would for iMessage. See our guide on RESTRICTIONS for more details and instructions.

18) Maps: Students can ignore this.

19) Safari: Students can leave most of these settings on their defaults. However, ensure that PRIVATE BROWSING is set to “ON”.

 

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4 thoughts on “Ideal iPad Settings for School Use

  1. Pingback: Tips for Initial Teacher iPad Training / Professional Development | SchooliPads

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  3. Pingback: Tips for Training Parents | SchooliPads

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