Just get an iPad for Christmas? Here are some tips for setting it up!

Here is another post under the “Basics” category: Setting up an iPad for the first time.
If you have just received (or purchased) your first iPad this Christmas, hopefully this post can help you get started. Congratulations on your new iPad. iPads are an excellent device to use in teaching. There are endless ways that an iPad can be used to aide teaching. This blog attempts to share some of them.
Since the release of  iOS 5 last year, Apple has made it quite a hassle-free task to set up your iPad without connecting it to a computer. I have not set up my previous three iDevices through my PC at all. In fact, I almost never connect iPhone/iPad to PC. It is no longer a necessity whatsoever.
First off, if you don’t have an Apple ID yet, you will need to set one up. A credit card is required (for future iTunes and App store purchases). Once you have your Apple ID, or if you have one from an old iPod/iPhone, enter it in on this screen. (Remember to keep your password safe!)
I would strongly suggest using iCloud. It is a great service for backing up your data in the cloud. An example would be if you lost your iPad (that was backed up), you could restore all your apps on your replacement. Also, iCloud will come in super handy if you own multiple devices and use Apple’s own iWork apps (Keynote, Pages, Numbers). It will work almost instantly. Save a file on one device, and all the changes on all devices will sync together.
Once you select “Back Up to iCloud”, your iPad will automatically back itself up every 24 hours.
Also, I don’t have an image for this, but I would also recommend activating “Find my iPad“. If you ever lose your iPad, you have a good chance of tracking its location (provided it is connected to the internet). You will also have the options to either remote lock it, send a message to it, or even remote wipe all the contents.
Once your iPad finds your wifi network, enter in your password and you’ll be good to go. When you bring it to another wifi network (work, Starbucks, friend’s house), you will need to input the new password, but this only has to be done once.
Now that your iPad is ready to go, you’ll need more apps than just the stock pre-installed ones that came with it. If you do not want your iTunes and App purchases reflected on your credit card bill, go out and purchase an iTunes/App store card. Redeem it on your device. Remember, you will periodically be able to buy these gift cards at a 20% discount. Take advantage of this, as the discount applies to all music, apps, and even larger purchases such as iTunes Match subscriptions and Netflix payments. (Yes, you can save 20% on your $7.99 monthly Netflix bill, making it around $6.40/month instead!)
As a teacher, go and download Dropbox, GoodReader, Pages, and Twitter to start off with. Check out my apps page for a larger list of apps, with many teacher uses. Also check out my list of non-app related articles on how to better use your iPad in your teaching. As for music, if you’re in the US, check out Spotify or Pandora for inexpensive monthly payment options for unlimited music. If you happen to have a lot of music already in iTunes, consider getting iTunes Match, a service which makes it incredibly easy to get all your music on all your devices, once again without the need to connect anything to PCs.
Further Reading
In order to stay current with iPads in teaching, continually check out iPads in Education Scoop.it page for current information. Follow the hashtags #ipaded and #ipadchat on Twitter. Always consider yourself a learner, willing to explore new avenues in education. Stay relevant, even get ahead of the rest of your teacher friends by constantly researching new and exciting ways to use your new tool in the classroom. Send me some ideas to post on teachingwithipad.org. I love to hear from educators around the globe on how they are using their iPads.
Do you have any different tips for iPad beginners? Any questions? Please let us know in the comments! 
Enjoy your new iPad. You will love it. 

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