I spend a lot of time sharing the benefits of scannable technology with teachers. QR codes and augmented reality triggers make it easy for students, teachers, and school visitors to find a web resource by using a scanning app on their device. Another option for quick website sharing is a URL shortener like goo.gl or bit.ly.
By shortening a long URL you can make it easy for students, parents, or other educators to locate material on the web. All you have to do is copy and paste a website into the URL shortener. It will automatically shrink the website and give you a short URL that takes you the same place.
Some people like using URL shorteners because they can track how many people have clicked on a specific link. It can also be used to bookmark favorite websites that you share frequently with members of your school community.
Try adding a short URL on a class newsletter or message home to parents!
If you are using iPads in your classroom you’ll want to check out the amazing accessibility tools that can help all of your students interact with their device. Jenny Grabiec is an Apple Distinguished Educator who has created a fantastic iBook that makes it simple for teachers to understand the accessibility features available on iPads. You can download the book for free and explore these tools in iBooks on your iPad or Mac computer.
A great way to capture the attention of your students is to introducethese virtual tools. If they are bored with traditional flashcards, post-its or math manipulatives try out one of the virtual tools on our list:
- MyScript Calculator (calculator)
- Coordinate Grid for iPads (graph paper)
- Reading a Ruler on iPads (ruler)
- Base 10 Blocks (math manipulatives)
- iPad Lab Timer for Experiments (lab timer)
- Thesaurus Reference Tool (thesaurus)
- iPad Measurement Tools (ruler)
- SMARTBoard Simulator for the iPad (dry erase board)
- No More Rubber Bands (geoboard)
- iPad Protractor (protractor)
- gFlash+ to Build Study Skills (flashcards)
- iOS 7 Spotlight: Timer (timer)
- Fraction Calculator (calculator)
- Tangrams – Geometry and More (math manipulatives)
- Custom Flashcards (flashcards)
- App Update: Educreations (dry erase board)
- Sticky Notes for a Tech Friendly Classroom (post-it notes)
- News Sources for the iPad (newspapers)
- Assessment Spotlight: The Answer Pad (bubble sheet)
- Fluency and Presentation Practice (teleprompter)
- Promote Student Engagement with a Virtual Whiteboard (dry erase board)
- Atlas Apps (atlas)
- Math Fluency (flashcards)
Students and teachers creating eBooks should check out Book Writer. The ease and simplicity of the intuitive interface makes this app a truly powerful tool. Children can use Book Writer to publish stories that can be shared with their families and added to an ePortfolio. Teachers can create books that document school trips or publish a collection of their students’ work.
Straightforward and easy to use, Book Writer lets you create a book right within the app by adding pictures, text, audio recording and even music. You can export the book to iBooks for easy reading on your iPad or share it via email. Simple and fun to use, students will love being content creators on their iPads no matter what event they are documenting or story they are telling. Teachers will also find that this app lends itself to creating customized books to share with their students. Book Writer is a very impressive app!
You can give children access to storybooks with these free iPad apps. In this list you will see eReader platforms that include picture books and chapter books – some even let students create their own! Whether you are using your iPad during a whole class read aloud, small group instruction, or sending kids off to read or write independently, you are sure to find something on this list that meets the needs of your students.
- Interactive Safari
- Storia – Your Tablet’s Virtual Bookshelf
- Scribble My Story
- Speakaboos for Storytime
- Illustrate a Story
- Shout Science Interactive Storybook
- 3D Picture Book
- Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
- Publish Stories on iPads
- Learn With Homer to Teach Reading
- Mibblio for Music Making
- Penguin Leveled Readers: iPad Bookshelf