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Monday, October 22, 2012

Creative Uses for iPads in the Classroom

This afternoon I Stumbled Upon a good Slideshare presentation from Mike Amante who I had the pleasure of meeting during ISTE 2010. Mike's presentation Creative Uses for Ipad in the Classroom offers a nice run-down of the apps and examples of using them in the classroom. The presentation includes some QR codes that you can scan to get the lists of apps that Mike recommends. Take a look through the presentation as embedded below and you're likely to find a new app or idea that you can use in your classroom.


Take Your Students on a Virtual Tour of the Tundra to Learn About Polar Bears

Discovery Education and Polar Bears International have teamed up to offer some fantastic virtual field trips starting later this week. During each of the virtual field trips students will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn from some leading experts on polar bears and Arctic climate change. Through the virtual field trips students will learn about the animals of the Arctic and how they have adapted to survive in the harsh Arctic climate. Students will also see and hear about how climate change is affecting the animals of the Arctic.

The first virtual field trip is on October 24 at 12:30 CDT. Click here to see the full schedule of the Discovery virtual field trips. The schedule extends beyond Discovery's involvement with Polar Bear International. Polar Bears International is running virtual field trips and webinars throughout November. Click here for that schedule.

Remind 101 Launches an Android App

Back in May Remind 101 released a free iPhone app that can be used to send text messages to groups of students and parents. Today, Remind 101 released a free Android app for the same purpose. Just like the web version and iPhone version of the service, Remind 101 on Android is an opt-in service. Students and parents have to enter a confirmation code to state that they do want to be contacted by you through the service. Remind 101 keeps phone numbers hidden so that the parties cannot see each other's numbers. Learn more about Remind 101 in the video below.


Applications for Education
The Remind 101 Android app could be a good tool to use to keep students and parents informed of important information about your classes. You could use it to send reminders about assignments, use it to send encouragement, or use it to send praise for a job well done on an assignment.

Teach Your Monster to Read Helps Kids Learn to Read

Teach Your Monster to Read is a fun game designed to help students improve the speed and accuracy with which they recognize letters and sounds. The game has eight levels (or islands as they're called in the game) each containing four activities. Students play the game as a friendly monster avatar. On each island students can earn prizes for their monsters and customize the look of their monsters.

Learn more about Teach Your Monster to Read in the video below.

Teach Your Monster to Read (First Steps): Trailer from Teach Your Monster to Read on Vimeo.


Applications for Education
Creating Teach Your Monster to Read accounts for all of your students is a simple process. Just register yourself as a teacher then enter your students' names (first names only) or upload a CSV file of your students' names. Teach Your Monster to Read will automatically generate a password for each student. As the teacher you can log-in anytime to see your students' progress.

Thanks to Fred Delventhal for sharing this last week.

Three Ring Adds New Features for Sharing Students' Digitized Work With Parents

Three Ring is a free iOS and Android app that launched in March. The app makes it easy to digitize and catalog your students' drawn and handwritten work. Today, Three Ring released a new option to share digitized works with students and their parents. To share an artifact with students and their parents just choose the artifact from your list then click the share button to send that artifact in an email.

Learn more about Three Ring in the video below.

Applications for Education
Three Ring provides a great way for teachers whose students produce a lot of handwritten, drawn, and hand-built work. Last week I was in an elementary school that had some first grade students' artwork on display. Three Ring could be used by the teachers of those students to create a digital record of each student's work. Three Ring is also useful for mathematics teachers whose students do a lot of work on paper rather than typing as they solve problems.

Stack the Countries - A Tetris-Like Geography Game

Stack the Countries is a fun geography app available for the iPad, the iPhone, and the iPad Touch. The game requires players to correctly answer a geography question in order to earn a game piece that they then place into a row. The object is to stack up pieces to reach a target height. When the target height is reached players move on to the next level.

The free version of Stack the Countries allows players to move through ten levels before the levels start to repeat. The paid version of the app costs $1.99.

Applications for Education
Playing Stack the Countries could be a fun way for elementary and middle school students to develop their knowledge of world geography. The developer of Stack the Countries also offers Stack the States which uses the same concept for learning about U.S. geography.

Thanks to Jen Deyenberg for the tip. 

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