Monday, January 14, 2013

Creation Apps on my iPad

If the first blog post in this series is any indication there are a lot of people interested in learning what's on my iPad. This post I will focus the creation apps that I use. I need to preface this post by saying I love creation apps. There are just so much higher level learning that takes place when you let students loose with Creation Apps.Without further ado here is what creation apps I have on my iPad and what I use them for.

  • Kabaam - This is a comic strip app that allows you to use your own pictures. As part of your comic strip you are able to add customizable speech/thought bubbles as well as shout outs to up to nine photographs. I use this app regularly to create Comic Strip conversations to explain social situations to a number of my higher functioning students on the autism spectrum. Its easy to use, low cost and lots of fun which makes it a winner in my eyes. 
          Cost --- $0.99
  • AudioBoo -  This is a combination website and iPhone app. It allows users up to five minutes of recording time and then converts the recording to a digital format which is playable by anyone. These recordings are posted on the users AudioBoo website. You guessed it.... I use this as my recording app. I use it to allow my students to self evaluate what skill we are working on such as carry over of a phoneme to reading or conversation or using a specific component of grammar correctly at the sentence. The sky is the limit with this app.
          Cost---Free
  • iMovie - I'm not sure I need to stop and explain this one. Just like its computer predecessor it is a simple movie making app. A couple of uses I have for it in my speech-language program are; 1) Creating video models to teach specific skills to students on the autism spectrum. It works great and has really helped the kids I have used it with. 2) To work on sequencing. We might read a familiar children's book together and the students are required to make a brief movie (I have a number of images already on the photo roll for them to use) retelling the story in the appropriate sequence.
         Cost---$4.99
  • GarageBand -  This is a recent addition to my iPad. I think that I finally have the basics mastered. I plan to use it with the 4th-6th grade technology classes that I teach. Our first project is going to be podcasts that contain a 60 second book report. Stay tuned for future blog posts on this topic. I feel very good about the project so I hope lots of learning will take place.
         Cost---$4.99
  • Keynote - Like GarageBand I'm new to Keynote. As we start to use iPads more and more in school, I found myself needing a presentation tool. So far I love Keynote! It is simple to use and offers all the features of PowerPoint. Its also a great resource for sharing information with a large group as I use airplay to display it on my Smart Board using the reflector app for my computer. 
          Cost---$4.99
  • Book Creator - I love, Love, Love this app! Book Creator allows you to quickly create your own books. You can add text, pictures, and audio. After the books are created, you read them through iBooks. It is fun to see the kids faces when they find their book on the shelf in iBooks. This is how I do all of my social stories. They are much easier to store and I can easily share them with anyone that has an apple device with iBooks on it. It is a little pricey but well worth every cent you spend on it.
          Cost---$4.99        
  • Educreations/Doodlecast Pro/ Explain Everything - All three of these apps do virtually the same thing but each has it's own little twist to screen casting. They all allow you to create videos and provide audio explanation of the video. Why three apps that do virtually the same thing you ask? They each have their own set of unique built in features and I like to bounce around depending what students I am working with. The list of uses is endless and allows you to provide modeling to students (which is a way I use regularly) or it allows you as the educator the opportunity to see what a student is thinking during a specific task. I also use the app to work on self monitoring.
          Educreations---Free     Doodlecast Pro---$0.99     Explain Everything---$2.99
  • Nearpod - I have written about Nearpod before.It is an amazing educational tool that allows the educator to create engaging interactive lessons. The lessons are deliverable on multiple iPads at the same time of which the educator has control. I have only used this tool with my technology classes but will be looking for ways to bring it to speech room. Recently I ran into an issue with Nearpod in that it requires a large wireless network to connect to or it runs extremely slow. 
          Cost---Free
  • Toontastic/Toontastic Jr. -  My students are hooked on Toontastic/Toontastic Jr. They love creating their own unique stories and bringing them to life on screen. I love the constant reminders they are provided with the components of a story. In Toontastic, they refer to the story components as setting, character, conflict and resolution. The vocabulary is more age appropriate for your children and they discuss the need to a beginning, middle, and end of a story. These two apps offer unlimited possibilities for working on literacy and language development. Having an all access pass to Toontastic is on my Wishlist. Hopefully someday I will find a way to turn that dream into a reality so my students can become even more creative.
          Toontastic---Free     Toontastic Jr.---$2.99
  • Sock Puppets - This app is very similar to Toontastic/Toontastic Jr.. Users are able to create a unique dialogue between two sock puppets that they place against the background of their choice. My students love this app. Just think of the unlimited possibilities that this offers in regards to social language and language development.
          Cost---Free
  • Popplet Lite - This is a graphic organizer app. Its a great app to use for turning your thoughts and ideas into a visual format. You are also able to quickly collaborate with others. A great replacement for the activities you've done for years with paper graphic organizers.
          Cost---Free
  • Study Blue - This app could be a replacement for anything you are using flashcards for. Users can create their own flashcards or find some shared cards that are stored on the Study Blue website. I love this feature because then students have access to them anywhere, anytime. 
          Cost---Free

I hope you take the time to check out a few of these apps. They offer a world of opportunity to you and your students for unique learning opportunities and require higher order thinking skills to promote quality learning.