I am increasingly becoming more reliant on my iPad in the classroom, not just for teaching but also for administrative tasks, so much so I no longer take my laptop to any of my classes and long gone are the days where I take a CD player to class.
I do my online roll marking with an app, all my sound files are stored in my iTunes library which I can access whenever I want and most of the student activities are done with various apps. However while I am enamoured with my iPad I still do use my laptop quite often, as both of these devices have their best uses. This is where I like using Splashtop 2.
Have you ever had the occasion where you are in class and about to start an activity only to realise that you have left the activity in your office? Or perhaps you want to show a DVD but forgot the actual DVD. As much as I don’t want to admit it, this has happened to me, thankfully not regularly, however I have found myself in that position. Splashtop 2 enables you to, from your ipad, access another computer, and then take control of the secondary device. You can project your manipulations to Apple TV or via a digital projector. While there are numerous ways to access your computer from anywhere, such as VNC or LogMeIn, Splashtop 2 is unique in that it emphasises multimedia, and is capable of streaming audio as well as video. That means, if I want to show a DVD, all I need to do is load the DVD into the DVD drive on my laptop, and when I am ready to show it, I can do so from any location providing it is on the same network.
To use this app you must first download the Splashtop Streamer for the computer(s) you would like to access. Once installed, you need to create a login for the Splashtop service.
As mentioned, you need to be on the same Wifi network as your computer in order to use the free version, however you do have the option to purchase the “Anywhere Access Pack” that provides connection regardless of the network.
I believe this is a great app in the teachers toolkit, as it gives you access to all your documents held on your laptop or PC, and for free you can access from anywhere within your school network at anytime.