mLearning: Apps for Elementary Students

This tackk looks at various iOS apps (although many are available for various operating systems, as indicated) for upper elementary students; there is an app for each subject taught, a short description, how it can be used in a class, a link to its webpage (where applicable), and a link to the app on iTunes.

Science: Star Walk

  • What this app is: "Star Walk is an interactive astronomy guide that shows celestial objects in the exact positions on the sky above you, providing detailed information about them. It helps anyone even remotely interested in astronomy find their way across the sky, determine where to look for any object, rewind or fast-forward time to see how celestial bodies move. It inspires curiosity about the Universe and helps users understand amazing cosmic phenomena" (Vito Technology, 2014, para. 1).
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS, Android, Kindle Fire, Windows phone.
  • How it can be used in a class: This app can be used when exploring solar system units as it gives students the ability to
  • Link to iTunes store
  • Link to Star Walk's Webpage

Social Studies: National Geographic World Atlas HD

  • What this app is: "The National Geographic World Atlas brings you the highest resolution map images available to your iPhone,iPad, or iPod touch, delivering the stunning detail, accuracy, and beauty National Geographic is known for" (National Geographic, 2014, para. 1).
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • How it can be used in a class: This app is great for social studies classes, as it allows students to explore topography, geography, and gives real images from around the globe. This takes it off the page and onscreen in order to create a virtual experience.
  • Link to iTunes Store

Language Arts: bookabi

  • What this app is: "bookabi lets children of all ages write illustrated stories.
    bookabi comes with plenty of 2D and 3D characters, objects and backgrounds for you to build your bedtime story, your comics or the story of your recent holidays" (Tamajii, 2012, para. 1).
  • How it can be used in a class: Using bookabi allows students create their own story and incorporate images, practicing their reading, writing, viewing, and representing skills. It is also more interactive, therefore can engage various students and their learning preferences.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • Link to iTunes store
  • Link to bookabi Webpage

Math: Sushi Monster

  • What this app is: This app is a game created by Scholastic Inc. to help students practice their addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication by feeding a monster solutions.  
  • How it can be used in a class: Sushi Monster is a great alternative to practice math sheets, as it engages the students through a fun and interactive way.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • Link to iTunes store

Computer Technology: Daisy the Dinosaur

  • What this app is: Daisy the Dinosaur is an app which is used to teach the beginnings of computer programming and coding. By using and inserting basic commands, students can create animations and videos (similar to Scratch).
  • How it can it be used in a class: This app is great for students who have an interest in programming, computers, as well as practicing sequencing.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • Link to iTunes store

Art: Paper by FiftyThree

  • What this app is: Paper is an app where you can draw, write, sketch, and design using a stylus or your finger. The app also gives you the ability to share your creations and collaborate with others.
  • How it can be used in a class: The app can obviously be used for creating art/visuals, but it is also used in various subjects by teachers through sharing, creating visually appealing lessons, and brainstorming. Paper is very simple to use, making it accessible for all students.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • Link to iTunes store
  • Link to Paper by FiftyThree's Webpage

Health: Middle School Confidential

  • What this app is: The app takes the award winning book series by Annie Fox and Matt Kindt, and uses the graphic novel style mixed with interactive questions and answers to explore issues teens and preteens are facing. There are 3 different apps, all exploring different topics; Middle School Confidential 1: Be Confident in Who You Are explores the topic of anti-bullying, Middle School Confidential 2: Real Friends vs. the Other Kind discusses interpersonal conflicts with friendships, including bullying, and Middle School Confidential 3: What's Up With My Family? looks at issues kids can face with their families.
  • How it can be used in a class: These apps are a new, unique, and engaging way for preteens and teens to explore interpersonal issues. Instead of just having conversations with adults (which we all can remember how embarrassing some topics can be at that age), students are free to explore some of the issues they are facing through an interactive and age-appropriate medium. The questions get at some of the situations, possible solutions, and ways to avoid some of these conflicts in the first place. These apps are a good way to begin various conversations around these topics.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: Middle School Confidential 1 & 2 are available on iOS, Android, Nook, Nabi, and SmartEdPad, but the most recent, Middle School Confidential 3 is only available on iOS.
  • Link to webpage with links to iTunes store

Learning Tools: popplet lite

  • What this app is: "In the classroom and at home, students use Popplet for learning. Used as a mind-map, Popplet helps students think and learn visually. Students can capture facts, thoughts, and images and learn to create relationships between them" (Notion Inc., 2014, para. 1).
  • How it can be used in a class: This app is great to help students practice various brainstorming, mind-mapping, and organizational techniques. Giving students the option of using this app opens the door to those who may need extra help in these areas.
  • What operating systems is the app available for?: iOS
  • Link to iTunes store

References

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