In the current times, home-schooling children, with guidance from their teachers, can be difficult. Due to lack of notice, teachers may not have been able to print off and send home worksheets ahead of time, or may only have been able to give enough for the first short while at home. Some publishers are also now giving access to the digital versions of their books.
While teachers are in a position to email on more work, or parents have sourced activities online, some families may not have a printer at home to reproduce those worksheets.
And for some children, using a standard pen and paper may not be the best way to complete a worksheet.
However, if you have access to a smartphone or tablet, or even a computer, there are ways to work around this.
By importing screenshots of the worksheets into programmes such as Microsoft Word or OneNote (the apps are free to download on iPad and Android) and using your finger or a stylus, you can complete the tasks assigned, before taking another screenshot as evidence of your work. We will walk through these options below.
Open the document you want to use. This may be a page of your digital book, an attachment your teacher may have sent, or simply something you found online.
There are two main ways to take a screenshot. The first is to use the physical buttons on the iPad or iPhone.
- Open the application where the source document is so that it is displayed onscreen.
- If you have an older iPhone or iPad (with a home button) find the Home and Top (power) buttons. The Home button is located directly below your iPad’s display and is the only button on the front-side of the iPad. The Top (power) button is the oval-shaped button atop the iPad in the right-hand corner.
If you have a newer iPad/iPhone without a home button, then you need to find the Volume Up button and the Power button at the top corner of the iPad.
- Press and hold the Top button, then tap the Home button/Volume Up button and release both. For the newer iPad/iPhone, press and hold the Top button and then tap the Volume up button and release both. Your iPad screen will then flash momentarily if done correctly, and you’ll hear a faint shutter noise if you have sounds on.
- Once captured, your iPad will automatically save the screenshot directly to your camera roll in the Photos app. Tap the Photos app and swipe to the bottom of the screen to view your recently captured screenshot.
The second way, where you can just use one hand, is to turn on the Assistive Touch option in the Accessibility menu. Instruction to do so can be found here: https://appletoolbox.com/how-to-capture-screenshots-ipad-iphone/
Once you have screenshot your pages, you can then import them into OneNote.
- Open the OneNote app on your iOS device. At the bottom of the screen, click on the option to add a Notebook:
- You will then be prompted to name your workbook (in this case, we have called it “number work”) and then click on Create.
- Open your Notebook by tapping on its name in the left-hand column, and then create a page by tapping on the +Page option at the bottom of the screen
- Once your page has opened, tap on the Insert tab and then on Pictures. (if you want to take a photo of a physical textbook, use the Camera option next to Pictures)
- Scroll to your recent photos, tap on the photo(s) you require (a tick icon will appear on them), then tap on Done.
- The next screen will allow you to crop or rotate the image as needed, using the tools in the top right corner. Click on the Done button in the bottom right.
- The picture will be inserted into your OneNote page. Tap on the Draw option in the toolbar, and then tap on the Drawing Mode icon on the right (picture of a hand holding a pen) Ensure that the Draw with Touch option is toggled on. Underneath that is an option to change how you hold the stylus so that it does not interfere with your writing i.e. left handed etc.
- You should then be able to write on the picture using a stylus or your finger. Use the outwards pinch option to make the image larger.
Open the document you want to use. Again, this may be a page of your digital book, an attachment your teacher may have sent, or simply something you found online.
Take a screenshot of the image. How this is done may vary by phone/tablet manufacturer, but usually, it involves holding down the power and volume down buttons at the same time. If you have Google Assistant enabled, you can press and hold the home key or use your voice to start it (usually by saying Hey Google), then asking it to take a screenshot.
Once you have screenshot your pages, you can then import them into OneNote, by using the following steps.
- Open the OneNote app on your Android device. At the bottom of the screen, click on the option to add a Notebook:
- You will be prompted to give your notebook a name; in this case we have called it English Notebook, then tap on Create
- With your notebook highlighted in the left column, click on the add a page option on the bottom of the screen:
- Once your page has opened, tap on the Insert option on the menu at the top, then tap on the camera icon:
- You will then be prompted as to whether you want to take a picture with the camera (if you have a physical book or worksheet in from ot you) or if you want to insert a picture from your gallery
- Click on Image from gallery and navigate to where your photo is stored, and then selected it.
- On the next screen, you will be asked if the photo needs to be cropped, rotated etc, by using tools in the upper right corner. Once you are happy with your image, tap on Done in the lower right corner:
- When the image opens in OneNote, tap on the Draw option in the menu. You can now handwrite and draw directly on the image. If you need to staop using the draw option, simple tap on the Stop icon on the right of the screen. This will then allow you to resize using pinching movements etc.
If working on pencil grip is on the agenda or you find it cumbersome to write with your finger, and you don’t have a stylus at home (check the junk drawer for any freebies you might have received!), take a look at this CNet video on how to make your own from a pen, cotton bud, tinfoil and tape.