Do you use webpages or online articles frequently in your lessons? Are you concerned that one day you will discover that it has disappeared or changed dramatically?
Perhaps the content is useful, but you are concerned about the appropriateness of the advertising in the sidebars of the website.
Have you ever started a lesson only to find out that the internet just went down and the online content you had planned to use is now upended?
Apple provides a very useful tool on an iPad which allows you to skirt all these issues. No more plan B.
What you will learn in this article
- Using screen capture on an iPad
- Capturing a webpage and saving as a PDF (for future offline use)
- Using Apple’s ‘Reader’ view to ‘clean up’ view of article and make it accommodating for special populations
- Marking up documents for your lesson
What you will need to have
- Internet connectivity
- Access to your OneDrive (OneDrive sign in is the same as your @k12 email address)
Most of us are familiar with screen-capturing an image on an iPad. If you aren’t, simply click both the lock-out button at the top and the home button at the same time to save an image to your photos app.
Screen capturing images on an iPad is a great way to quickly capture and store information. With this feature, you can easily capture high resolution images of websites, documents, and presentations for later reference or sharing. It’s also useful for creating quick visual notes or tutorials. Additionally, it can be used to create digital portfolios of projects that you’ve worked on or for quickly archiving important screenshots without having to take the time to save them as individual files.
If we were preparing a lesson about art history and choose to exemplify the accomplishments of Frida Kahlo, we might choose a website for students to read background information about the artist.
When pressing the home button and lock out buttons simultaneously, a small thumbnail image of the webpage will appear on the screen in the lower-left.
Tap the thumbnail image to bring up more options. The thumbnail disappears after seven seconds if you don’t tap it. If you miss it, just do another screen capture. You will see the following screen. Note that you have options to edit and markup the screen capture using the built-in markup tool indicated below by the pink arrow.
Capturing the content as a PDF
Here comes the real magic when screen capturing a webpage. If you want to capture the whole page and not just the visible image on the screen, you can choose “Full Page” from the top of the screen. This will allow you the option to save the entire webpage as a PDF file (Portable Document Format — think Adobe) that you can save in OneDrive to use with this lesson year after year. No more worries about the content changing, the article disappearing, or internet availability.
Notice the visual image of the entire webpage (highlighted in pink) on the rightmost part of the webpage in the image above. Rather than just capturing the image on the screen, you are capturing the full webpage.
In the video below, let’s learn how to save this as a PDF.
That’s it! That’s all you need to do to save a webpage as a PDF and keep it forever.
Taking it a step further
Apple Safari web browser has a feature called Reader that allows for different formatting options when viewing a webpage. Utilizing this feature in conjunction with what we learned above gives you even more options.
Take a look at the images below. Slide the arrows back and forth to see the regular view versus the Reader view.
Changing the view to Reader view allows your students to focus on the content that is most important. It also allows for better focus for students with special needs. Also, as it basically narrows down webpages to the core content located in the body of the webpage (leaving off any sidebars), it will usually exclude any advertising content that may be inappropriate for your students. Keep in mind, Reader view is not available for every webpage. More complicated webpage formatting usually precludes Reader view.
Reader view also gives you options for changing both the font type and size. It also allows you to change the background color as you see in the set of images below.
To use Reader view, simply touch the “aA” in the browser address bar as shown below:
Marking up the PDF documents
It is easy to markup these documents. As an educator, you may wish to highlight certain content for students. Or, perhaps, you want your students to highlight content or comment on it.
Apple markup tools make it easy to do this.
If you would like to markup the document prior to saving it as a PDF and storing it in OneDrive, select the markup tool in the toolbar (indicated by a pen tip) as highlighted by a pink arrow in the image below.
When you are finished marking up the document, simply choose “Done” in the top-left of the screen to save.
If you use Apple Classroom to enhance your instruction and manage the student use of iPads, you can now easily AirDrop this document to all of your students. You can also add it to your Schoology course, which could be brought back each year from your Schoology class archive.
If you would like additional assistance with anything that we learned today or you would like assistance with AirDropping and Apple Classroom, please do not hesitate to reach out to Jimmy Stewart or Eric Murphy. We are happy help.