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I've been teaching high school math for over 20 years. I write about my experiences here and also share activities that I have done with my classes that have been successful (and some that have been not so successful).

How to Share Your iPad Screen with Your Students

If you are teaching fully virtually or in a hybrid model (some students are at home and some are virtual), then you need a way to share your screen (and therefore your handwriting) with your students.

I am going to discuss two ways you can share your iPad screen with your students.

Method #1: You have an Apple TV and an iPad

Method #2: You have a Mac computer and an iPad. 

Why not just join Zoom or Google Meet with the iPad?

Your first thought might be to have the iPad join your Zoom or Google Meet session. That does work, however, in my experience there is lag time between writing on the iPad screen and it showing up. This is rather annoying.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.

Method #1: You have an Apple TV and an iPad

I recently started at a new school. I inherited a classroom that used to belong to a history teacher. 

I have a desktop computer, a laptop, and an Apple TV. I was able to get an iPad that belonged to the department and an Apple Pencil that belonged to the school. I paid a $7 one-time fee for the GoodNotes app. Notability is another popular app, but I have no experience with it.

1) Connect the Apple TV to the projector in the classroom. I'm not sure about the model of Apple TV that I have (it's connected to the projector and the ceilings are high). I would guess it's a 2nd or 3rd generation Apple TV.

2) On the iPad, swipe down from the top right corner (I have an iPad 8th generation) and choose Screen Mirroring.

3) Choose the Apple TV device to which you will mirror your iPad screen.

That's it! You should be able to see everything you do on your iPad screen on your projector screen.

4) I use the GoodNotes app to teach and I love it. I will take either a PowerPoint or a Word document, and save it as a pdf in my Google Drive folder, then in GoodNotes I can import documents from my Google Drive folder. Then I can write or draw on top of my pdf.

5) After I teach a lesson, I can export the entire document with my handwriting into another pdf and upload it onto my website.

Method #2: You have a Mac computer and an iPad.

(this is the method I used for a while in September 2020 at my previous school)

Connect the iPad directly to your Mac computer

To avoid the lag time, here's what you can do:

1) Connect your iPad to your Mac using your regular USB charging cable (the same cable that you use to charge the battery of the iPad).

This is an iPad Air, 1st generation and a MacBook Pro from 2017. 
I have to use an adapter because there is no USB port on the Mac.

2) On your Mac open QuickTime Player

3) Go to File > New Movie Recording 

4) Next to the red record button, click on the drop-down menu, then choose your iPad.

At this point, the iPad asked me to enter my passcode and to confirm that I "trust this computer."

5) You should then see your iPad mirrored onto your Mac computer screen.

NOTE: You do NOT have to actually click on Record in QuickTime Player. Unless you want to record your lesson. Be sure to check that the audio is working first if you plan to record.

If you are fully virtual or hybrid, you can then use your Mac computer to share your screen through Zoom or Google Meet with the students at home.

If you are in a hybrid model, you can connect the Mac to your projector for your students in the classroom. You can change your Display Preferences to Extend the Desktop, drag the iPad screen to the extended desktop (aka your projector), and keep the Google Meet or Zoom screen on your main desktop so that you can see your students at home - all while you are writing on your iPad!

App Suggestions

Now that you have your iPad connected to your projector, what apps should you use? Here are a few suggestions:
  1. Show Me
  2. ExplainEDU (formerly known as Explain Everything - I used this in the past and loved it.)
  3. Notability (I haven't used this personally, but I hear wonderful things about it.)
  4. GoodNotes 5 (I have this app and I love it!)

Big thanks to my colleague, V, who showed me this setup and shared her tips.

Disclaimer: This was not the setup that I used during the 2020-2021 school year. If you would like to see my setup, read this post: How to Teach Math in a Hybrid Schedule. I am on the Tech committee at my school, I love technology, and I am always experimenting with devices, equipment, and apps; I enjoy sharing my experience.

Want more iPad tips? Check out this article: 9 iPad Tips for Teachers: Enhancing Classroom Learning

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