Mobile Apps

Five Mobile Apps for the K-12 Classroom

Learn French - Mindsnacks by MindSnacks

Learn French through the use games designed for essential vocabulary and conversation skills. Keep things interesting with rich and unique games designed to help memorize words, practice verb conjugation, and learn word gender.

With 50 lessons and 40+ hours of content, this app would work well in a French classroom for added practice. The lessons in the app could be paired with classroom curriculum to motivate the students to keep speaking, reading and writing the French language when not in class. It could be part of the assignment to make sure certain lessons in the app are completed each week.

Sushi Monster by Scholastic

Practice, reinforce, and extend math fact fluency by challenging students to extend fact knowledge to support strategic reasoning and computational flexibility in addition and multiplication. Strengthen reasoning strategies for whole number addition and multiplication by helping monsters make a target sum or product.

I can see this app being used by a teacher in a K-12 classroom in the context of a classroom competition. At the end of the week, some classroom time would be set aside where the whole class could use their iPads simultaneously and see who can garner the highest level in the time available. A running tally of scores could be kept through the term to track improvement. While it would provide some stress relief for the class as a whole, it would also allow them to practice quick thinking math skills.

Shakespeare by Readdle

Shakespeare is a free app with the complete works of Shakespeare (41 plays, 154 sonnets and 6 poems, including doubtful works) and a searchable concordance to find the exact word or phrase you’re looking for. It allows you to customize your reading experience, includes detailed scene breakdowns, and a glossary of Shakespeare's words.

Most high schools include at least one Shakespeare work in their English curriculum. The use of this app would reduce the paper trail in the classroom as well as offer students resources to better understand the text at their fingertips (e.g. detailed scene breakdowns, glossary of terms). I think the search function, along with the addition of line numbers with each text, would be most helpful because a student can very quickly find what a teacher may be explaining and follow the lesson more easily.

Dinosaurs: The American Museum of Natural History Collections by American Museum of Natural History

This app contains a mosaic of more than 1000 images from the Museum's archive, woven together to create a striking image of the world’s most famous dinosaur, the Tyrannosaurus rex. Each interactive photograph includes information about where the fossil was found and the paleontologist who uncovered it. Post notes on photos and read other users’ comments on dinosaurs and science. You can also share favorite photos with friends so they can join your virtual dinosaur dig.

The detail in this app would be perfect for an interactive unit on dinosaurs for a K-6 classroom. A lesson plan could include the teacher leading the class through a study of one dinosaur: using the app to find the bones, look through photos, research information on where the fossil was found, and what we can learn about the life of the dinosaur from his remains. The unit could conclude with the class divided into groups and each group will choose a dinosaur to write a report on, using the app as a research base and a photo library. Reports would be presented to the class.

NOVA Elements by PBS

Explore why the periodic table is shaped the way it is, what gives each element its own unique set of properties, and how elements combine to make everyday objects such as a cup of coffee. With “NOVA Elements,” explore an interactive periodic table, play a game hosted by David Pogue, or watch the two-hour NOVA program, “Hunting the Elements.”

This app could be used in a chemistry classroom to explore the periodic table of elements and show students how molecules interact with each other. This app could be used to create a project for students in groups to present to the class how certain molecules interact with each other to create things we use everyday. Students could use the app as a research base to create models of molecules interacting with each other.

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