Tag Archives: App

AASL Recommended Apps: Content Creation: Toontastic 3D

Last summer, the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) announced their Best Apps for Teaching and Learning 2017. The apps encourage qualities such as creativity and collaboration, and encourage discovery and curiosity.

The app Toontastic 3D lets your students create cartoons that are animated and narrated. Pick from their existing characters and settings or draw your own. Add some background music to your story, then export your creation as a video to a mobile device. For answers to common questions about the app, check out their Tips page.

Level: Elementary +
Platform: iOS | Android
Cost: FREE

This review of the app from Common Sense Education gives the app four out of five stars and includes some lesson and activity ideas. Tech Crunch has this article about the app which includes an interview with one of Toontastic 3D’s product managers.

Watch this quick video demo to see all the fun you can have with this app:

AASL Recommended App: Humanities and Arts: ChineseSkill

Last summer, the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) announced their Best Apps for Teaching and Learning 2017. The apps encourage qualities such as creativity and collaboration, and encourage discovery and curiosity.

The app ChineseSkill makes this hard-to-learn language fun and less intimidating. The app is game-based, so users can complete lessons while playing against the computer or friends. Users are able to practice speaking Chinese into the app, which will offer feedback on pronunciation, and there are multiple tests throughout lessons to help cement words and concepts. The app is very comprehensive and covers speaking, reading, and writing.

Level: Kindergarten +
Platform: iOS | Android
Cost: FREE

Check out this review of the app from All Language Resources that includes links to additional resources for more advanced Chinese language study. This article from Startup Living China (scroll down to find the section on ChineseSkill) gives an overview of how to use the app as well as a list of pro/cons. You can check out other resources for learning about China on their page, too!

Watch this short video to get an idea of how the app works:

AASL Recommended Apps: STEM: Desmos Graphing Calculator

The app Desmos Graphing Calculator is made to help students understand advanced math concepts. The app does this by putting them onto a graph with an x-axis and y-axis, also called a coordinate plane. “The built-in examples cover subjects such as lines, parabolas, trigonometry, conic sections, parametric equations, transformations, statistics, lists, and calculus.” Students can change variables manually, graph several functions at once, and save/share their work.

Level: High School +
Platform: iOS | Android
Cost: FREE

Common Sense Media has this post about the ways the app can be used, as well as suggestions for ways to use the app with students. This quick post from App Ed Review features instructional ideas to incorporate the app into the classroom.

This video (under 5 min) shows a quick tutorial on how to use Desmos Graphic Calculator:

AASL Recommended Apps: Google Expeditions

Last summer, the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) announced their Best Apps for Teaching and Learning 2017. The apps encourage qualities such as creativity and collaboration, and encourage discovery and curiosity.

The app Google Expeditions works together with a mobile device/tablet and a viewer, and allows teachers to share 360 virtual reality experience with a whole classroom of students at the same time. The teacher’s device is the “guide,” and the other devices that are connected are the “explorers.” The explorers can see all the images for a large collection of prepared expeditions, which also include written details of the images being shown. A quick tip from the app: “On the guide’s device, the teacher can see where all of the students are currently directing their attention. The teacher, or guide, can direct students’ attention to a specific part of the image by holding their finger on that spot. Students will then see an arrow in their viewer indicating the direction they should look.”

Level: Elementary +
Platform: iOS | Android
Cost: FREE

This review from Common Sense Education includes feedback from teachers as well as lessons ideas to use with the app. Or check out this review from an educator who writes about his experience trying out the app in his classroom!

AASL Recommended Apps: Content Creation: Touchcast Studio

Last summer, the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) announced their Best Apps for Teaching and Learning 2017. The apps encourage qualities such as creativity and collaboration, and encourage discovery and curiosity.

The app Touchcast Studio allows students to “produce broadcast quality projects on an iPad, like having a TV studio in your hands!” Students can create interactive videos that can be annotated or layered with elements from online or the cloud, like websites, images, polls, and more. “Built in tools include whiteboard, green screen, a multi-camera switcher, a teleprompter and video editing features. Users interact with elements from within the video by touching or clicking without leaving the video. Analytics are available for interactive elements.”

Level: Middle School +
Platform: iOS
Cost: FREE

Read reviews from educators and get ideas for incorporating the app into classroom activities from this post on Common Sense Education’s site. CNET has this detailed review of Touchcast, which includes some examples of the capabilities of the app.

Here’s a video (under 4 min long) with some tips for using Touchcast Studio in your classroom: