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Practice Storytelling with Toontastic

23 Jul

Screen Shot 2014-07-23 at 4.21.23 PMI’m a big fan of Toontastic and have had the opportunity to share this digital storytelling tool with teachers across the country.  Toontastic Jr. Pirates Puppet Theater is a great option for younger students exploring the basic concepts behind telling stories including characters, sequence and dialogue.  It’s a terrific app for getting students prepared to write their own tales or notice story elements as they read.

Screen Shot 2014-07-23 at 4.21.39 PMDownload this app for free to access a selection of content – you’ll have the option to upgrade for more scenes if you like!

Check out my lesson plans for teaching ELA with mobile devices!

DIY Sun Science on iPads

20 Jul

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Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 5.07.40 PMDIY Sun Science is a fantastic app for letting students explore the natural world.  Full of activities and information, this free app lets users check out the solar system.  It’s a great choice for teachers looking to bring more hands on instruction into a science unit or locate informational text to supplement a lesson.

Teaching science with iPads? Check out my lesson plans!

Explore Sound on iPads

19 Jul

Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 4.57.00 PMimageLearning through discovery can help children of all age levels gather information and get excited about a new topic. Sound Uncovered is an awesome free app that lets kids explore this concept.

They’ll interact with different activities as they begin to make connections to the world around them.  A great choice for station work in classrooms with just a few iPads!

EduGame Spotlight: 7 Little Words for Kids

18 Jul

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A fun app for helping students think about works and their relationships is 7 Little Words for Kids.  Similar to the game designed for grownups, this kid-friendly version is perfect for getting kids hooked on word games.  They’ll have to work their way through puzzles as they interact with different letters and words.
Looking for whole class ELA activities? Here are my iPad lesson plans!
UPDATE: This app is no longer free, but still fantastic!

Fotor App for Easy Photo Editing

16 Jul
Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 10.03.01 AMFotor Photo Editor gives users the power to edit photos easily.  Students can resize, crop, and rotate photos.  There is also the option to add effects, frames, texts and stickers to an image.  You could use this app to have students edit pictures that they took using their device during a school trip or after completing a science experiment.
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Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 10.02.49 AMInstead of just snapping a handful of pictures during a school event, ask children to pick their favorite two or three images to tell a story.  Using Fotor Photo Editor your students can enhance each picture before sharing it with their class or placing it in a digital portfolio.  This app is easy to use and gives students lots of options.
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Fotor Photo Editor is free to download and contains in-app purchases for extra effects.  It is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch but optimized for iPhone.  Check out their iOS or Android apps or visit their website to learn more!

Shadow Puppet EDU for Digital Storytelling

14 Jul
blog-puppet-eduShadow Puppet is one of my favorite apps for digital storytelling and now they have a new version designed specifically for classroom use.  All of the original great features that allow students to bring still images to life by recording their voice over a slideshow have been enhanced for students.
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With Shadow Puppet EDU videos creations can now be up to 30 minutes long and include 100 slides of pictures.  Users have the ability to add images from NASA, Flickr Creative Commons, and the Library of Congress’ archive without leaving the app.  This high-quality app was  chosen by The American Association of School Librarian as a 2014 Best App for Teaching and Learning.
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Completely free for classroom use, Shadow Puppet EDU is a great choice for teachers looking to integrate multimedia into a variety of activities!  Learn more about Shadow Puppet EDU by visiting their website.

QR Code Reader for All Devices!

12 Jul

The App Store is full of QR code readers – most of which are free.  My go-to QR code scanner is i-nigma.  One reason I recommend this app at workshops and conferences is because it can be used on lots of different devices.  If you visit their homepage you can see links for the Apple App Store, Android Market, BlackBerry App World and WindowsPhone Marketplace.  Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 9.04.25 AM

This means that i-nigma is perfect for schools rolling out a BYOD (bring your own device) program.  It’s also great for teachers recommending a QR reader app to parents so that they’ll be able to read the information posted on a QR code attached to a newsletter or homework assignment.

Looking to learn more about QR codes?  Check out my take at your own pace online course! (50% off)

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