One of my biggest beefs with schools that spend thousands of dollars pushing iPads into classrooms has been the fact that the iPad has never REALLY been a great creation tool.  Instead, iPads often end up doing nothing more than reinforcing the kinds of passive consumption behaviors — watching videos, reading text, searching the Web — that I think we ought to be pushing OUT of our classrooms.

That’s why Canva’s new iPad app has caught my attention.

Designed to extend Canva’s remarkable desktop design functionality (see here and here) to mobile devices, this app has the potential to turn classroom iPads into tools for teaching students how to create stunning visuals.

Check out this video introduction:



The simple truth is that learning to create remarkable images is an essential skill in a world where we are surrounded by visual messages.

While being persuasive will always depend on written text — think about the the fact that I am trying to change your thinking every time I sit behind my keyboard to blog — being persuasive in a skim-first, read-later world ALSO depends on the ability to craft content that captures the eyes of viewers.

Canva remains the most approachable tool for helping kids to design extraordinary visuals.  If their new app makes it possible to do so on the iPads sitting in our classrooms, they will have hit an #edtech home run.

In the next few weeks, I’ll have some of my students experiment with the app.  I’ll share what they create here.



Related Radical Reads:

Check out this Anti-Bullying PSA [ACTIVITY]

Five Tips for Creating Slides that WON’T Bore Your Audience

Using Canva to Teach Visual Influence


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