Circulating iPads at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library

AHMLThere is yet another great discussion happening on the ALSC Listserv.  Someone asked for information from libraries who have already implemented a circulating early literacy iPad project. Lindsay Huth, Early Literacy Specialist at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library has added her library’s experience to the list. I’m going to develop a section just for circulating iPads projects with examples of successful projects.

See below for Lindsay’s details:

We circulate iPads at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library.  The Darien Library was a great resource for us as we developed this collection.  We have 10 circulating iPads in Kids’ World and one tablet for library use only.

The iPads are pre-loaded with apps for ages 2 to 14 and apps for children with special needs, such as Tap to Talk.  We include an annotated list of apps and directions on the basics of how to use the iPad.  Our kit includes:

iPad3: $500.00
Apps: $100.00
Big Grip Frame: $35.00
Case: $30.00
Charger: $30.00
Cable: $5.00
Cord bag: $5.00
App info: $2.00
Total: $707.00 

A customer must have an Arlington Heights Library card to check out the iPad.  The only information we take is their library barcode.  There is no age-restriction.  The packaging on the case notes that the customer will be responsible for full replacement costs.  The iPads check out for 1 week with a $0.25 a day late fee.  The iPad for library use only can be checked out for two hours.  We limit to one iPad per card.  When they are checked in, our IT team figured out a quick and easy way for us to plug them in, wipe out data from the previous customer, and restore our default settings.

Please feel free to contact me if you have further questions.  There were quite a few logistics to figure out with this collection but it’s been well worth it!  The customers have really enjoyed them.

Lindsay Huth
Early Literacy Specialist
Arlington Heights Memorial Library


Posted on December 3, 2012, in Apps and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. So cool that everyone is sharing this info, making it easier for the rest of us to think about trying it! Thanks for compiling and putting it in one place we can go look!

  2. Hi Lindsay — I have 6 iPads that I am using for programming. Can you let me know how you manage your iPads? How many Apple IDs are you using? Thanks! –Angela

  3. Hi Angela- We have 11 iPads for the Kids’ World collection at AHML. Chris Krueger is the Application Specialist here who set up the accounts and helps us manage the iPads. He gave me permission to post his answer to your question here, and also invited any further questions you might have. Chris can be contacted at His expertise was integral to launching this new collection, as you can see here:

    Here’s a quick run down of how I setup the iPads for Kids’ World.
    1. I setup one iPad as the “master image” for the rest of the iPads. This included all the default settings we required.
    2. I created an account on Apple’s Volume Purchase program and bought 11 copies of each app. (
    3. I used Apple Configurator ( to install the apps on the “master image” iPad.
    4. Then I used Apple Configurator to make a copy of that first iPad.
    5. Using Apple Configurator I setup the rest of the iPads in “Supervised” mode which allows for additional security settings and the automatic wiping of devices when you plug them in.
    – The iPads all use a shared VPP ID to authenticate the purchased apps but users are still allowed to add their own Apple ID’s to the iPads when they check them out. Any settings a patron adds (accounts, pictures, etc) are automatically wiped when plugged into the Apple Configurator utility for syncing.
    – It’s also worth mentioning that the Apple Configurator program is only available for Mac OS at this time.

    I hope this information is helpful! Please feel free to contact us again. -Lindsay

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