So this? Yeah… this is pretty cool! I had my students make fraction movies today. Using the app “Explain Everything” they recorded a lesson or an explanation of their understanding. I can imagine using this recorded lesson as a resource for students in the future. It’s also a great way for students to communicate their thinking without having to write it all out. I can get their ideas even when I don’t have the time in class to sit down with each group during class time – I can review their movie after the students have left for the day. As I said to the students, there will be a learning curve with the software. The movie they made today is not as good as the movies they will make in the future. We reviewed a couple of movies in math class and students discussed the math, critiqued their own work and provided constructive criticism for other groups. Some really powerful stuff going on here!
I just happened to be resyncing my ipods this morning so I had a chance to go through my apps again when a colleague asked for some advice on some good apps. I thought I would also post here for parents who often ask for what apps are worth the investment. The following is a list of apps I would be hard done by to work without:
Pages: Just a word processor, but it works great for students who prefer to type. I also have a couple of students whose handwriting I have a hard time reading and Pages means that they can communicate their ideas easier.
Dropbox: easy way to get documents from my computer to their device. Love it. I use it with my guided reading program. Most of my books come from Reading A-Z and they open seamlessly.
iBooks: This is where the reading A-Z books open to. It looks just like the paper book without the wasted paper. Have also invested in a few books from iBooks and the kids can highlight and make notes as they read.
Dictionaries: Some are a little pricey, but they are by far the best investment I have made: Collins, Multi, Robert (dixel) Meriam Webster, Bescherelle). My students LOVE looking stuff up that was like pulling teeth to get them to do before. Writing and reading have improved TONS just by having these resources.
Tumblebooks: This is less for my own students, but they read them with their buddies. My four year old loves them and they highlight the words as they read along.
Explain everything: Allows you to import an image and will record sound and drawing as you explain. I haven’t used this with students yet but I want to use it with math evals. I have created a couple of math lessons with this that students can refer back to when they need support.
Evernote: just a great way to organize notes
Chalkboard: Good way for students to reason through math.
Math tutor and World Maths: Good drill and practice
LeaderPost: Kids use for current events. Good for distilling an article down to a paragraph or two.
Sticky notes: kids use stickys as they read for vocab and notes