Tag Archives: apps

Integrating the iPad/iPhone/iPod into your classroom – literally with Marco Torres

Wow! The last two Friday’s have blown my mind. I am so excited and inspired by the new things I have discovered and the questions I am now asking. Last Friday was Challenge Based Learning and today I went to a workshop on integrating the iPad/iPhone/iPod into your classroom, with the very inspirational, Marco Torres.

I really liked Marco’s analogy of ‘Studio, Stage, Community’. Those of you familiar with ‘Caves, Watering Holes and Campfires’ learning spaces may relate. The amount of technology students have at their fingertips should not be overlooked, whether we as educators, parents or members of the community like it or not, it can not be ignored or avoided. It’s here, now and students are always going to use it! Marco described the ‘Studio’, where students are using technology to produce content, the ‘Stage’ being the Internet, sharing their work and finally ‘Community’, where their work is celebrated with a global audience. He emphasised the fact that with mobile devices, students have their ‘Studio, Stage, Community’ on them at all times.

As a result of today’s workshop, I thought I would share some of the apps and ideas that were discussed. Some, I had heard about but never tried and there were also lots of new ones. The focus was on students using most of these apps to create- not just regurgitate information or play drill and practise games.

GarageBand- GarageBand turns your iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch into a collection of Touch Instruments and a full-featured recording studio — so you can make music anywhere you go.

See (and hear) the potential-http://vimeo.com/43162659 Students playing in an iPad Orchestra created by their teacher. Directed by Marco Torres

Wiki Nodes- Wikipedia comes to life with an infinite constellation of visual links. Browse. Discover. Bookmark. Annotate. Share.

Evernote_Icon_256No surprises here- Evernote is an easy-to-use, free app that helps you remember everything across all of the devices you use. Stay organized, save your ideas and improve productivity.

Wkikhood- Organises the information from Wikipedia for any place in the world. Within a few clicks you not only get access to all the locations around you, but also the vast information related to these locations categorized by “persons” und “culture/buildings”.

AppshopperAppShopper keeps you up to date on the newest App Store apps, sales and freebies.

Barefoot World Atlas- A magical interactive 3D globe that invites children to explore the regions and countries of the world, discovering hundreds of fascinating features and immersing themselves in the rich wonders of our planet.

ShowMe- Allows you to record voice-over whiteboard tutorials and share them online.

iMovie- Make beautiful HD movies anywhere with iMovie, the fast and fun moviemaking app that puts everything you need to tell your story at your fingertips.

AutoRap- Simply speak into your iPad or iPhone and it turns it your speech into a rap song.

Haiku Deck- The simple new way to create stunning presentations for any occasion.

Explain Everything- Easy-to-use design tool that lets you annotate, animate, and narrate explanations and presentations.

Word Lens- See the world in your language: instantly translate printed words using your built-in video camera, in real time!

With these apps and examples of student learning I saw today as well as last Friday I am beginning to ask my self many questions.

How can I challenge my students to ask ‘under the surface questions’?

What am I doing in my classroom to get students to come up with their own ideas about learning?

How can my students learn by watching me learn?

How can I encourage my students to challenge themselves and their own thinking?

I would love to hear your thoughts.


10 of My Favourite Apps

I know everybody has their favourites but I thought it was my time to share the iPad apps that I can’t live without! I have had my iPad since September 2011 and found that as each day at school went by I was using it more and more. Regular readers of my blog would already be aware of my affection for Evernote and Good Reader and how I use these apps to eliminate paper in my reading assessments with students. These are just two of my favourites so I thought it was time to share a few more!

1. Evernote

I have said it before and I will say it again and again until every teacher I know at least tries Evernote! Evernote is a note taking app that allows users to take notes by typing, audio, video and pictures. It can be used on a variety of devices and syncs, so if I edit on my laptop it appears on my iPad!

I use Evernote to-

Save all of my assessment notes and data-
I have notebooks set up for different subjects and add notes about students as I notice them! I always have either my iPhone or iPad with me in the classroom so I can update quickly and easily, it keeps me mobile, away from the laptop and I never forget anything!

Keep checklists-
I have checklists set up for keeping records for homework and home reading, as well as keeping track of spelling results. I also know of teachers that have set up checklists for use in guided reading.

I keep track of all staff meeting notes so that I can refer to them later, again I find this easier than writing my notes on paper or in a book as I tend to put it down somewhere and never find it again! I also take notes on team meetings and can easily share or email the notes between team members.

If This Then That- “Put the Internet to work for you!” ifttt is a web app that allows you to create tasks of a simple structure. For example I could get ifttt to send me en email with the weather forecast every morning or send my mum a Facebook message on her birthday.

I use ifttt with Evernote to-

  • Save my starred items from Google Reader. It keeps them all together and easy to find at a later date.
  • Save new blog posts- every time I write a new post it sends a copy to Evernote for safe keeping.
  • Save my Twitter favourites- every time I favourite a tweet on Twitter it saves in Evernote.
  • Make a copy of my YouTube videos.

Professional Learning-
I keep track of all of my professional learning using Evernote- I can create quick and easy notes, take pictures, video and audio so that I don’t forget what I have learnt!

2. Good Reader

Good Reader is an app that allows you to annotate PDF and Word Documents.

I use Good Reader to-

  • Complete running records (I then save them in the corresponding student note in Evernote)
  • Complete paperless Observation Surveys.
  • Complete assessment checklists.
  • Have important documents on hand ready to go- eg when I am completing a reading conference I have the CAFE menu open and have easy access to the CAFE Ready Reference Guides.

Basically anything that you can do on paper you can scan or email and do it on the iPad!

3- Twitter

The most influential and inspiring Professional Learning Network around! For any teacher reading this who is not on Twitter I would highly suggest that you get on and have a look. I use Twitter to
LEARN and to SHARE. Kathleen Morris shares her ideas for teachers new to Twitter- Using Twitter to Build Your PLN, Are You On Twitter Yet? and Top 10 Twitter Tips

4- WordPress

The WordPress app allows me to edit and update blog posts and make comments easily and efficiently.

5- OneNote

I do all my planning and work program using OneNote and since Office 2010 and the integration of SkyDrive it is even better! It is great having OneNote on my iPad and iPhone. The app allows me to have easy access to my planning documents at all times and I can add and edit on the go. The only thing I don’t like is that you can’t edit a table that has already been created- can be frustrating!

6- TED

Need some inspiration- take 10 minutes to listen to the latest TED talk.

7- Flipboard

Turns your social networks into an interactive, online magazine! Add your Facebook or Twitter account to view in a dynamic and different way on the iPad or iPhone. You can also set up different Twitter hashtags that you follow.

8- Prezi Viewer

Allows you to view Prezi’s on your Ipad!


9- Splashtop Whiteboard

Download the Splashtop streamer on your computer and iPad to create an easy and free remote desktop! Sit anywhere in the classroom and control your IWB or have students demonstrate on iPad rather than standing up in front of the class.

With Splashtop Whiteboard-

Teachers can:

Be in Control – Have complete control over the applications on the classroom PC as if you were sitting right there. No need to stay at the front of class. Be free to roam around. Hand the iPad to a student and let their imagination do the rest!

Experience lifelike play back – All video and audio are played in high definition on your iPad. Play Adobe Flash content, iTunes music, DVDs, CDs, etc.

10- iMovie

I love iMovie! It is so easy to use, very user friendly- I demonstrated once to some Prep, 1 and 2 students and that was it! They were publishing their writing using iMovie to be uploaded to our class website and were so excited about it. I find that it is a lot more instant than Photo Story or Movie Maker. I have used iMovie to create weekly school vodcasts, record and make movies of students working, had students make movies and photo stories to publish their work.

Ok so there are just 10 apps that I love and use lots! I hope that you get some ideas and maybe try some yourself!

How have you used these apps?

What are your favourite apps?