Sunday, August 13, 2017

Which Are Your Favorite Apps?

Unfortunately, I only have two iPads for my classroom.  I currently have written a project for two more and have my fingers crossed that I will get those.  I don't think I have to tell a teacher why having iPads in the classroom is so great, but if you don't have any maybe you aren't aware of all of the things your students can do with them.  So I thought I'd highlight five of my favorite apps I have on those two iPads that I use with students.

My all time favorite app is doink.
This app allows your students to create greenscreen projects.  The app is $2.99.  I have used this app when I taught kindergarten, first, and now fourth.   I could teach a kindergartener how to film using Doink and allow this to be a center in my classroom.  So, I know any age group can use this app.  My fourth graders do amazing projects on it.  Our school has a Deaf and Hard of Hearing program on campus.  Last year I mainstreamed.  This app was absolutely great!  I had the child sign her mission report, her mission was the backdrop!  The interpreter, interpreted into the microphone, you should have seen the pride in her face when I played back her report.    Last school year, we trained teachers on how to use this app, you should have heard the laughs as we played with this app.  Some fun items to use with it, is a green suit, I bought mine on Amazon for $9.99.  You can also paint pizza boxes green and now you have a small greenscreen.  You can use the stir sticks from Starbucks or paint straws green and students can glue their art/puppets to them and film.  The items that make this app easier for kindergarteners to use are a tripod, an ipad mount, and a microphone.  I get many ideas by following @DoInkTweets on twitter.

The next app that I love is Seesaw:  
I downloaded this app years ago, but only began using it last year.  This app is free and is also web based.  This is basically a digital student portfolio.  Students can upload their own classwork.  You can also have students share, so you could ask a student to explain a math problem, then allow other students to comment on it all digitally.  So very powerful!   You can connect parents which allows them to see their student's work.  You can also use Seesaw to communicate with parents.  If you'd like to see what Seesaw can do, check out their youtube video.  I joined the facebook group Seesaw Teachers, here people post all types of ideas of how they are using the app.  Seesaw also has many webinars to teach you step by step how to set up your classroom to how to use it.  I also follow@Seesaw on Twitter.

I also love Tellagami:
This is another app I have used in kindergarten, first grade, and fourth grade.  Tellagami has a free version, but I'd say the $4.99 purchase for Tellagami Edu is well worth it.  This app is especially great when the parent is not okay with photographs.  In this app students create an avatar and then speak into the iPad to record their voice.  If you have students that are non-communicative they can type in what they'd like to say and the app will speak for them.  When I taught kindergarten, the autism program mainstreamed into my room and I had a student who was non-communicative, but he was able to do a farm report in this way. I follow @tellagami on twitter for ideas.

 The last app is one that I use, but the students love when I use it.  It's Teamshake:
This app is $0.99.  I only started using this three years ago, so I've only used it in fourth grade.  To use this app you add your class list.  It will create groups for you, you tell it the size of the group and you shake your device and up come the groups.  My students know when I grab for my phone, they all will say, "Shake it up!"  I shake it and then tell them which group they are in.  

If you haven't tried out these apps, I hope you give them a try!  

You may want to check out my TeachersPayTeachers store.  


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