Three Ways To Use The Screen Recording Tool on iPads

Capturing evidence of a student’s learning is vital in order to be able to show how you know, and how they know, they have been successful. In a previous blog, Adrian explained how to use the screen recording feature in iOS 11 on iPads. If you’re not familiar with where to find it and how it works, take a look at his blog. It will provide you with all the information you need to be able to use screen recording easily.

Once you know where the screen recording is – and remember it works on both iPads and iPhones, so long as you are running at least iOS 11 – you’re ready to start capturing evidence of your students work. One of the things I like about this tool is that it’s so easy to operate your students can use it also.

To get you started with thinking about how you could use this tool effectively in your classroom, I’ll explain three ways I’ve used it recently.

[bctt tweet=”Use the iPad screen recorder to capture evidence of students’ work.” username=”donnagolightly1″]


1.Scratch Junior

A little while ago I was working with some Year One and Two teachers. We were looking at ways to integrate the new Digital Technology Curriculum with things they were already doing in their classroom. Their topic of inquiry at the time was around light and sound, and the ways these can affect and impact on people.

These teachers had heard of Scratch Junior but hadn’t used it with their students. After demonstrating the tool and modelling the way it worked, I set them a challenge to create a scene where there was a particular light source. They then had to code the sprite to either say something or act in a certain way – according to how the light made them feel.

There was much laughter, a very high level of engagement and some awesome scenes were created. I have to say – some were way off the brief, but they got sidetracked with the tools and what they could do. This is exactly what would happen in a classroom – I believe it’s always better to go with the student’s ideas than force them to stick what you first suggested!

Now, this is where the screen recording feature came in. There is no way to export a Scratch Junior creation out of the app in a way that it can be seen by everybody (it exports as a scratch file) BUT – by using the screen recording tool you can make your Scratch Junior full screen, play it, and record it at the same time.

Once the recording was finished, it automatically saved to the iPads camera roll, where they used the edit tool to clip the beginning and the end so the finished product contained just a recording of their Scratch Junior project.

Here’s an example of what the finished project looked like:

An easy way to capture a finished project in a format that can be easily shared to a variety of platforms for all to see.

[bctt tweet=”Share #scratchjunior creations by using your #ipad screen recorder.” username=”donnagolightly1″]


2. Oral Reading

Often we want students to practise their oral reading. However, when they disappear into a quiet corner, or outside to sit under the tree on a sunny day and practise their reading out loud we have no evidence of what they did, or whether they were, in fact, improving with their fluency and expression.

One thing you can do to change this is use the screen recording option on the iPad.

Ask your students to choose the favourite part of their book, or maybe their favourite page, You could ask them to choose a part of the story where a\ something is inferred or maybe choose a part that shows where a problem occurs. You can literally tailor this to whatever reading skill you are focusing on if you want to.

Use the camera and ask the students to take a photo of that part of the text. (This also reinforces all those great skills needed to take a great photo – iPad up the right way, in focus, lined up correctly etc). Then they can use the screen recorder to record themselves reading it orally. Just like that – you have your evidence! And if you set them the task of reading a part with a particular focus you also have evidence of whether they understand that reading skill of identifying what it was you asked them to find.

[bctt tweet=”Use the #ipad camera and screen recorder to capture evidence of students’ oral reading.” username=”donnagolightly1″]


If you use Seesaw they can upload their recording for you to listen to at a later time. If your students have a G Suite for Education account they can share it with you that way. I had a Google Form that I used to share with my students. They added their link to the form and I only had to go to one place to hear everyone’s recordings.

3. Prove what you know

I’m always asking students to prove how they know they are right when it comes to maths problems. We used apps like Virtual Manipulatives and Maths Slide 1000 (just to name two) that allowed students to show what they knew but this wasn’t proving how they knew they were right.

You guessed it! By using the screen recording feature on the iPad they could also use their voice to explain how they knew they were correct.

[bctt tweet=”Prove how you know you’re right. Use the #ipad screen recorder to add voice to students work.” username=”donnagolightly1″]


There are lots of awesome apps like Book Creator, Explain Everything and Seesaw that have voice recording tools built into them, but having it natively on the iPad allows for so many more ways to explain their thinking.

So there you are – three ways to get you started with how you could use the screen record feature on iPads with iOS11. What other ways can you think of to use this tool?

If you want to know more about how you can use the iPad in your classroom you can read about using the Files App here, the camera here or using markup and annotations here.

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