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‘APPY AS – Notes For My School Presentation

February 1, 2015

The Abstract: You don’t always need to download an app from the iTunes Store. The following web-based apps are free and iPad-friendly. When selecting these apps, I focused on opportunities for creativity and thinking in the Early Years Classroom.

BINGO BAKER

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A great tool for practising basic number facts, or vocabulary terms. No need to print off: the boards load and are marked off online. This screenshot is of a BingoBaker board I made up when teaching the ‘aw’ sound in a spelling lesson. However, when students themselves create items and write the clues, then the learning gets even better.

TODAYSMEET
I usually have this running when the students first arrive in the morning. They can can contribute to the whole-class thinking on an issue, or just let us all know what they have been up to on the weekend. I have also found it great for small-group writing, where we take turns at creating the sentences.

DEVIANT ART
Deviant Art is a large online community for the sharing of art. Although the sharing aspect is not suitable for young students, their MURO drawing space is great. Images are saved easily to the iPad photo album.

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This screenshot will give you an idea of the drawing space, and my ‘train’ sketch.

37SIGNALS CHALK
There’s so many good things to do with the simplest of drawing apps, even those which use only two colours. This one saves easily to the iPad photo roll.

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In the first example,the young student can write a number sentence to match. In the second example, the question may be asked, “These are half of the shapes. How many might there be altogether?” However, this is not really much more than an digital worksheet – unless the students create the pictures and word puzzles themselves, for their peers.

AWESOME WEB WHITEBOARD
A nice collaborative tool which shares easily, I can see this being used with brainstorms, tallying, venn diagrams. Below is the screenshot of the Venn diagram I aim to use in the workshop, getting us to share our collective thinking to compare Julie (Bishop) to Julia (Gillard).

If you want your students to do more than play drill-and-kill apps, but you are not able to choose alternatives in the iTunes Store, these web-based apps might get you rethinking. It’s not about what happens ON the iPad, but what happens BECAUSE of the iPad. The learner, not the app, produces the thinking. Have you tried out any of the above web-based apps in your classroom? Tell me your stories here in the comments. And let me know of any other web-based apps that you have used successfully.
Cheers.

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