I teach in an elementary iPad Lab. This year I ventured into the realm of newscasting. Daily, my students record and produce their own newscast and share it with the school. While the students learned to produce the entire newscast independently, I quickly realized I had a problem—elementary aged Camera Kids. The videos they created were enough to cause anyone to feel sick to their stomach—shaky video that weaved all over the place. If you get seasick, you shouldn’t watch their first newscasts. However, it wasn’t their fault. Asking an elementary student to stand perfectly still for an entire minute is a near-impossible task.
Then I came across The Padcaster. The Padcaster is an easy-to-use iPad case. Place the iPad in the case with the camera facing forward. There is a hole in the case for the camera to see through. Then mount the case on a tripod, giving the iPad a steady place to record from. The iPad easily slips into The Padcaster’s case and securely holds it in place. Finished recording? The iPad is just as easily removed. Surrounded by soft rubber and edged with metal, the chances of accidental harm coming to your iPad are significantly reduced. Versatility is the name of The Padcaster’s game. Additional tools such as high-quality lights, a wide range of microphones, lenses, and even a mini teleprompter can be purchased and attached directly to the case with screws (that are included). Tripods, a green screen, and mounting accessories can also be purchased.
Our newscasts now have a completely different feel—one that doesn’t make you nauseous. The microphone and wide-angle lens have added to the newscasts’ professionalism. The Padcaster was a fantastic addition to our studio.
I love it so much that I have begun creating other videos throughout the school, including a video of our current kindergartners telling next year’s kindergarteners everything they need to know to succeed and have fun when school starts. These tasks have required me to travel throughout the school with The Padcaster, iPad, and tripod. The Padcaster passed this test with flying colors. It held up to the abuse of traveling and the abuse of elementary students. I was surprised at the ease with which I was able to move from classroom to classroom.
The Padcaster can be purchased in a variety of sizes that accommodate all sizes of iPad. You can purchase the case alone or you can purchase the case as a set. The set includes the case, a wide-angle lens, and a microphone for $399. The Padcaster also offers a “Build Your Own” option that allows you to pick and choose which accessories you’d like to add. You can also purchase the case and the add-ons separately. The expense for this product is well worth it. It’s easy to use and contributes to high-quality, professional-looking videos. I recommend this product for any classroom, school, or human being that likes to use an iPad as a recording device. You won’t regret your decision!