Apple Watch for School Administrators: an innovative tool or simple arm candy?


I consider myself an early adopter, an innovator, a creative thinker and technology forward for anything educational. I am also married to a tech geek. If he didn’t find so much purpose in coding for education, I am sure that he would work for Apple. There are so many benefits to educators being married to educators, but I get the added bonus of lifetime tech support (winning)! Of course, we have been following the Apple Watch and wondering how to leverage it in the education world.

As soon as the Apple Watch was announced, we were talking about how it will influence our culture and could be utilized in the school setting. We eagerly awaited the opportunity to make an appointment at the Apple Store to try it on – this is what awesome date nights are made of, right? I liked the smaller screen and my husband liked the bigger screen- not surprising. I really liked the stainless finish and the blue leather wristband. Then we saw the price tag – instant deflation.

My husband left the store last spring more convinced than ever that he will by the 2.0 when it is released. A smart move by a smart guy. Apple’s first innovations always have room for improvement. I left the store waiting, wishing and wondering about how I could justify such a purchase. Could I incentivize myself to accomplish a goal and the Apple Watch would be my great reward? Maybe. Should I justify it as a new opportunity to learn (typically a big winner in the justification department at Casa G-N)? Hmmm. I couldn’t do it. If only money for all the cool stuff at Apple grew on trees. Then it happened. I signed my kids up for Apple Camp. So for three days I was around the Apple Watch and it called me. While I observed my daughters learning a new drawing app and creating in iMovie, I looked at it and I talked with the geniuses about it. Everyday I wondered more and more about how to utilize it for education. I finally broke down. I bought an Apple Watch with the idea that I would try it for two weeks and return it if it didn’t yet make an impact on my life.

I have had the Apple Watch for a week and a half. There is no doubt that it makes a statement. It is comfortable. It is a major improvement from the FitBit that used to adorn my wrist and it helps me get up and move more at work during the summer. However, once the students arrive, I won’t need that reminder because I won’t be in my office and I certainly won’t be sitting much. It is really fun to be able to purchase things with it, thats when I feel like I have been animated into the Jetsons show. It also feels like the Jetsons when I call, text or use email with it. I haven’t missed a communication since wearing it but I did have to turn off some notifications because I was getting inundated with updates from Twitter, Instagram and Voxer. The first day I had the watch I got the first pictures of newborn twins of a friend- right on my watch! Aw!

I can imagine that my middle school students will start up regular conversations about my watch should I keep it and that is a worthy relatable reason to keep it. I feel a little like I am wearing something from Back to the Future or the Jetsons which makes me feel cool, but is it really as useful, yet, as the price tag should expect it to be? I’m not sure but I will have to make up my mind before next Tuesday!