A few more interesting and useful apps for educators, and an interactive iBook …
Every month I get sent a bunch of apps that people would like me to review and consider writing about. While I really can’t check them all out, I do take note of those that are education specific, and from time to time I will have a handful that I think are very much worth sharing.
Here are four apps (a couple just for iOS, and a couple for both iOS and Android OS) that came across my desk in the last month or so that I think some readers will find worth learning more about, depending on the grade level and academic subject areas they work with.
A lot of teachers use rubrics to mark student's work, whether it be work habits, class work, assignments or homework. This process is usually performed on paper and is both time consuming and laborious. Assessmate enables teachers to import their own rubrics and class lists into the app and mark student’s work. Assessmate also allows users to edit, export and archive assessments.
The concept of Assessmate was simply to save educators time in marking student's work. What is interesting however, is the unexpected benefits that the app has brought to student learning. Student engagement has increased. Students are able to self assess their work or even peer assess other students. Student direction (students in control of their own learning) is another area that Assessmate has unintentionally improved. Students can easily build their own rubrics with appropriate assessment criteria in which they can achieve success and be in control of their own learning.
A short video (approximately 4 mins) in which students discuss the benefits of the app (without prompting!) can be found at https://www.facebook.com/Assessmate.
Chem Pro is unique because it was created by students for students. The app features 80 self-developed video lessons (31 hours total) that take students through the entire year of college General Chemistry or high school AP Chemistry. From the basic concepts of density and calculating molar masses all the way to solving complex equilibrium problems, the lessons pass down student approaches to tackling problems that would be found in homework or an exam. Chem Pro also includes several study-aids such as reference tables, an interactive periodic table, and flashcards to help students reinforce important concepts such as common polyatomic ions.
Since its release in 2010, Chem Pro has been downloaded over 140,000 times and has received rave reviews by students and teachers alike. Learn more about it at http://www.ihelpnyc.com.
For elementary school level math; $0.99 on iTunes
In Math Superheroes, Mathy and Matheo guide your kids through 6 chapters of games and learning about numbers, shapes, patterns, sequences, operations and more, with thirty original games, tested and recommended by teachers. As a natural “Little Bee's ABC's” successor, it was #1 at the US AppStore for weeks. The makers work hard to maintain the content's quality and graphic language as a successful formula for educational purposes.
Check the promotional video at Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=CUg5vW9EwY8
For music education ; $14.99 on iTunes
This “Interactive Listening iBook” was chosen as a #1 Editor’s Choice by Apple. (While this is iBook, not an app, as a product that you buy and download from iTunes, a truly interactive iBook seems app-like enough to warrant inclusion in a listing like this).
From the iBook's web site … “Created for digital-savvy students, Interactive Listening features Hollywood-style graphics, interactive 3-D instruments and computer games. At the same time, the iBook includes interactive educational content spanning 35,000 years of music, with sounds from every continent, from prehistoric cavemen to Beethoven to Coldplay. “I’ve never seen anything like it.” Jennifer Foxx, President of the Phoenix Music Teachers Association.” Learn more at http://interactivelistening.com/.
Related Posts (if the above topic is of interest, you might want to check these out):
The iPad Isn’t the Only Tablet Computer Being Used in Schools
6 Higher Education Institutions Leading the way with Mobile Learning Apps
The Updated Classroom – Developing Student Writing Skills with Tablet and Smartphone Apps
Tablet and Smart Phone image used with permission from Shutterstock.com.