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01 November 2013

Fun Friday: Apps for your classroom

So you're lucky enough to have an ipad or two (or even a class set) for your class.  But what do you download first?  There are so many apps out there, you don't know what is good, what is crap, or what isn't really that educational.  Let me help....

Please note that unless specified, all the apps mentioned are free.  Also note that I have not been compensated in any way for mentioning them, I just like them!

If you are teaching pre-k or k, the first app I would download is Little Writer.
Basically, it is a tracing app that teaches kids how to write upper and lower case letters, numbers and words.  My kinders love it!

For math fact fluency in grades 2-5, I love Number Run.
Now, this one does cost $1.99 to download, but the students have to go through multiple levels (of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) facts to win.  In fact, I've yet to see a child complete all levels.

For writing in grades 2-5, I really like PictureBook.
I've used this since day one, and have students create their own books.  You can then send them via email to anyone, and can print them out (in PDF format).  They can add pictures, etc to create a real book.

For formative (or even summative) assessment, I LOVE Socrative.  It's like those kind of Senteo clickers (that nobody in my school really ever used as they were a pain in the rear to set up), only better.

You do have to set up a teacher account first (and there is a teacher app for your device, or you could just use the computer), so you can't just download it and expect to work wonders right away---there is some setup first!  You can upload quizzes, have students answer ABCD questions, use exit tickets.  It's great for reviewing things.

All grades, Quick Voice Record:
You could record students reading, a student could "tell" a story and could transcribe it later, you could record a readers theater---or even a reminder for yourself.  For smaller files, you can email to anyone.  For anything over 3-4 minutes long, you have to get it off some other way.  My students are assigned a specific iPad, so I just rename their recordings to their name + the date, and they can go back and listen to themselves throughout the year.

I hope these are helpful.  If you have any suggestions, please let me know!

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