Mobile Apps for the K-12 Classroom

Mobile Learning allows students to create, collaborate and learn anytime and anywhere.  There are numerous apps that can be used in K-12 classrooms but it can be difficult to find those that would truly engage your students and enhance their learning experience.  The follow is a list of five mobile apps for the iPad that can be used in lower elementary classroom to transform your teaching.

1. PLANTS by Tinybop

Wow!  This interactive app lets students explore the amazing world of plants and the interconnectedness of flora and fauna!  PLANTS introduces students to the life cycles of flora and fungi, seasons, as well as explores different biomes!

In the classroom...

For elementary students this app would be great for exploring their local biome.  Having a concrete understanding of where you live and where you come from is a great starting point for future learning as it allows students to build on their previous knowledge by comparing and contrasting as they make sense of the world around them... near and far!

2. THE HUMAN BODY by Tinybop

Another fantastic interactive app by Tinybop!  Children can explore the inner workings of the body, from the circulatory system to how our eye functions!  The visual animations, great auditory accompaniment (like guts gurgling!) and interactivity keeps this app engaging and brings the body to life for kids!

In the classroom...

Being able to see the inner workings of the body with animation is key to the success of this app in the classroom.  For example, when learning about healthy eating habits students can use this app to also learn about the digestive system.  They will not only learn the vocabulary for the parts of the digestive tract but see the process of food entering the mouth and discovering what truly happens inside our bodies!  This makes the importance of what we put IN out bodies more relevant and real for young students.  If students have any questions or comments they can also record their thoughts for other students to hear.


This app is more than a substitute for the traditional tangrams.  This interactive game teaches vocabulary for shapes and their attributes while solving geometric shape puzzles.  Their are options to increase the difficulty levels to suit a wide variety of students.  The puzzles develop problem solving skills and spatial awareness which are key in the early elementary years.  By progressing through the puzzle pathway students solve puzzles and learn skills with gradual increasing difficulty which helps to build confidence.

In the classroom...

This app would be a great way to reinforce a more traditional geometric shape lesson.  What better way to learn about a triangle than to experiment with how multiple triangles at different angles can combine to make new shapes!  See is believing.  

4. WRITING WIZARD by L'Escapadou

This is an interactive Behaviourist app with motivators for completing tasks correctly.  Writing Wizard teaches proper letter formation in colourful, creative ways!  There are a variety of customization options for both student and teacher.  I like that it allows you to customize word lists and keep profiles and track student progress.

In the classroom...

This app is beneficial for early elementary students, particularly those who need positive reinforcement for practicing letter formation, letter recognition and sound recognition.  

5. Monster Physics by Freecloud Design Inc

This app allows students to create intricate machines from scratch using and learning about a variety of component parts while learning the basics of physics.

In the classroom...

I would consider this a Constructivist app by nature.  I love that it builds students inquisitiveness and creativity.  What happens if I add a wheel here?  A propeller there?  It is discovery through trial and error while discovering the resulting behaviour of their machine leads to observations and conclusions about simple physics principles.

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